Injuries and medical emergencies
When you first arrive in Oxford you will need to register with the College Doctors. If you are already registered with another Oxford practice you do not need to change doctors, but the College needs to know the name of your Oxford doctor. For information on making an appointment or getting telephone advice from a GP, see
Registering with the College Doctor will put you on the database of the National Health Service.
The College Nurse is here to advise, treat, and support any College student or staff member who is ‘unwell, injured, or in difficulty’. Family planning advice, including emergency contraception, repeat prescriptions, doctor’s appointments (usually same day) and travel advice are also available. All consultations are confidential. Please see her contact details and clinic times.
Counselling and mental health
See Welfare and Wellbeing for details of services and people who can help, including:
Contraception and sexual health
Contraception is freely available from the College Doctors and the College Nurse, or the Alec Turnbull Clinic (tel. 01865 456666). Emergency contraception is available from the Nurse for 72 hours: go to her as soon as possible. Blood pressure and other checks for repeat oral contraceptive prescriptions are available from the Nurse, following an initial visit to 19 Beaumont Street to see a GP or specialist Practice Nurse. Sexual health advice is also available from the College Nurse and from the GUM clinic (tel. 01865 231231).
The Cornmarket Dental Practice will accept any member of the College for regular or emergency care; however, only undergraduates will be eligible for NHS treatment. The practice is at 3rd floor, 11-12 Cornmarket Street, Oxford (tel. 01865 244304); the hours are 7.30am to 5.30pm, Monday to Thursday, and 8.00am to 4.30pm on Friday. The out-of-hours emergency telephone number for dental advice or treatment is 111.
Students in serious financial need may be entitled to an exemption certificate and would then recive treatment free. If you are entitled to exemption from NHS charges it is mandatory that you present your exemption certificate at the time of treatment; otherwise you will be charged the appropriate NHS fee. Such fees are normally reclaimable retrospectively. The exemption forms, HC1/HC2, can be obtained from the College Nurse or from post offices.
Postgraduate students should, if necessary, contact a dentist who is accepting NHS patients, such as Studental. NHS dental treatment is not free, but it is cheaper than private dentistry.
You are advised to retain your dentist at home for routine check-ups.
There are several opticians around the city centre. Eye tests cost around £30. Lenses and frames are quite expensive and it pays to shop around. Once you have your prescription, you can take it to any other optician to have it made up. For eye injuries and urgent conditions, contact the College Nurse, the College Doctors, or the Eye Hospital directly on 01865 234800.
Please keep a supply of a simple painkiller such as Paracetamol and buy a thermometer. If you are unwell with flu-like symptoms, please do not socialise or attend tutorials or lectures until you are well.
The Pandemic Flu advice line number is 0800 151 3513. They will provide you with a unique reference number so that your ‘flu friend’, carrying ID (e.g passport or bank card) for both you and them, can collect Tamiflu antiviral from the Ten O’Clock pharmacy, 59 Woodstock Road, Oxford.
Registering with a general practitioner (the College Doctor) will put you on the NHS database. If you phone the practice they can give you your NHS number but you will rarely be asked for it.
Consultations with doctors are free. The only payment will be for the medicine they may prescribe (currently a flat rate of £7.85 for each prescription). If you are given a prescription, you need to take it to a pharmacy (e.g. Boots in Cornmarket Street) to get it made up. The rules regarding what can be sold over the counter and what is prescription only are very strict, but pharmacists are very helpful.
Exemption certificates are available for students on very low incomes with £16,000 or less in savings: these certificates entitle them to receive free prescriptions and dental care. Application forms are available from the College Nurse.
Any student on a course lasting longer than six months is entitled to full NHS treatment for conditions which require treatment while they are here. For stays of less than six months you may be required to pay. Proof of eligibility may be required for hospital treatment.
These have to be arranged through the College Doctors, even if the specialist is to be seen privately. You cannot arrange to see a consultant without a GP referral. Some specialist departments have very long waiting times, e.g. dermatology and orthopaedics. The main reason anyone would decide to be seen privately is to be seen more quickly.
Physiotherapy and chiropody are often best sought privately. Please ask the College Nurse or Doctor for recommendations.
Alternative therapies (e.g. homeopathy, chiropractic, herbal medicine, Chinese medicine, aromatherapy, acupuncture or reflexology) are not available on the NHS. Some therapies are available through private medical insurance schemes, e.g. BUPA. The College Nurse can provide contact numbers for a wide range of therapists.