Healthcare in the UK
National Health Service (NHS)
The UK’s NHS is the publicly funded healthcare system for UK citizens and legal immigrants.
- Find out more about your eligibility for free treatment.
- Treatment and services available under the NHS.
If you do not qualify for free treatment you may have to consider purchasing private medical insurance.
General Practitioner (GP)
The local doctor, normally referred to as the GP provides your local healthcare service at their surgery or practice. You will have to register with a GP when you arrive in the UK. You will need documents to provide proof of employment, address, passport etc. You will then, after a few weeks, be sent a medical card with your NHS number.
Visit these websites for more information:
Things to consider:
- It may take some time to register with a GP so if you are on any particular medication it may be sensible to bring some with you.
- If you are given a prescription for medicine by the GP, you will need to purchase the medicine from a chemist or pharmacy.
- GPs operate different systems for making an appointment. It’s best to check with your registered GP what their system entails.
In case of life-threatening emergencies requiring immediate medical care, dial 999 and request an ambulance.
If you have an urgent medical problem and you’re not sure what to do, call 111 or visit the NHS 111 website where you can speak to an adviser.