Nurse with hand on the shoulder of male patient
Nurse with hand on the shoulder of male patient

Doctors and nurses

The National Health Service (NHS) is the national healthcare system in the United Kingdom which is publicly funded. In order to access NHS healthcare in the UK, you must register with a doctor (also know as a General Practitioner or GP). Your college will have an arrangement with an NHS doctor and many also have a college nurse.

Registering with a doctor in Oxford

You need to register with your college doctor (or chosen GP/private medical practice) in Oxford as you are deemed to be a resident of the city during your studies. Should you have a long-term health condition, it is possible for your college doctor to liaise with other health practitioners who know you and your medical history well. At any practice it is normally possible for you to choose to consult either a male or a female doctor. Like all doctor-patient relationships, those between college doctors, college nurses and students are confidential. If you are not entitled to free NHS treatment you may register with your college doctor as a private patient.

You can choose to register with another local GP if you prefer (if they will take on new patients). You can also choose to register with a local private medical practice for treatment if you are registered for NHS treatment but want more than the NHS is able to provide, or if you are not entitled to NHS treatment. The University does not endorse any one local medical practice over another. If you are not entitled to free NHS treatment you are advised to take out appropriate private healthcare insurance for the length of your stay in the UK.

Students from Britain, the European community and any country with reciprocal health arrangements are eligible for free treatment under the NHS. If you are in full-time education and under the age of 19 you may also be exempt from most NHS charges. You may also be entitled to help with charges on the grounds of low income. However international students who applied for their visa after 6 April 2015, may be required to pay the immigration health charge in order to access NHS treatment. Information on the entitlement of international students to treatment under the NHS is available on the UKCISA website.

If you are unsure whether you are entitled to treatment under the NHS, check with the Department of Health, Room 4W04b Quarry House, Quarry Hill, Leeds LS2 7UE. Tel: 0113 2545819 or email:

College nurses

For minor sickness and ailments you are able to consult and obtain treatment from your college nurse. Most colleges either provide sickbays or have special arrangements for students who are confined to bed in their rooms.

College support

Every college has a welfare team, which provides support to students including signposting to specialist services when necessary. 
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