Health Insurance for International Students in the UK (FAQ)

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Are international students who study in the United Kingdom required to pay any additional fee to access health insurance? Is healthcare free for international students in the UK?

All legal inhabitants are covered by the National Health Service (NHS), regardless of nationality, visa status, or tax or insurance contributions. As a result, overseas students in the United Kingdom can use the NHS in the same way that British citizens can.

In this article, we covered everything foreign students studying in the UK need to know about health insurance.

Is Private Health Insurance Required for International Students in the United Kingdom?

International students in the United Kingdom are not required to obtain a private health insurance policy, either while applying for a visa or when enrolling. Private insurance is available if you want to receive medical treatment in private clinics or hospitals in the United Kingdom, although it is not required. The National Health Service (NHS) covers the majority of your needs and is used by the vast majority of British citizens and residents.


How Much Does Health Insurance Cost in the UK for International Students?

Health insurance for international students in the UK costs £470 per year. When you apply for a student visa, you must pay an Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS), which must be paid in addition to the visa price. You must also pay an IHS for each dependent who will be accompanying you if any.

The Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) is a tax that all newcomers to the UK must pay in order to get NHS benefits. If your course is less than six months in length, the fee is simply £235.

How Do I Pay the Student Immigration Health Surcharge in the United Kingdom?

When you apply for a UK Student Visa, you must pay the Immigration Health Surcharge. You must pay the IHS by debit or credit card throughout the application procedure if you are submitting your visa application online. Before returning to the visa application, you’ll be redirected to a site where you must complete the payment within 30 minutes.

Do international students get NHS? All international students are eligible for NHS treatment in the UK. They have to pay a healthcare surcharge (£150 per year as a student, eg £300 for a 2-year visa) while making their visa application prior to their arrival in the UK.


How Does the NHS Work in the UK for International Students?

How Does the NHS Work in the UK for International Students

You will be registered with the NHS once you have paid the Immigration Health Surcharge, and you will be able to access national-level healthcare during your studies. You do not have to pay anything for the following services if you use the NHS:

  • Consult your physician or go to a walk-in clinic.
  • After an emergency, hospitalization is required (A&E).
  • In a public clinic, minor-injury care is provided.
  • When your GP refers you to a specialist, you can have a consultation or therapy with them.

What Does the NHS Not Cover for International Students Seeking Healthcare?

In most circumstances, the NHS does not cover the following expenses:

  • Medication on prescription
  • Dental care
  • Sight tests, glasses, and contact lenses are all examples of eye care
  • Wigs and fabric supports are available

You must register with a local General Practitioner (GP) clinic as soon as you arrive in the UK, as this is the first place you should go for medical care or advice.

Who Are General Practitioners (GPs) and What Do They Do?

General Practitioners are doctors who work for the NHS (GP). They collaborate with other doctors, nurses, and administrative staff in local clinics. You should register with a general practitioner (GP) so that you have a doctor in charge of your continuing healthcare and a point of contact for medical issues.

If you require more specialized treatment, your GP will maintain track of your medical history and records and recommend you to medical specialists or consultants.

How to Register with a GP as an International Student in the UK Before Getting Health Insurance?

You must register with a local General Practitioner (GP) clinic as soon as you arrive in the UK, as this is the first place you should go for medical care or advice.

To register with a GP, you a foreign student studying in the United Kingdom, you will need to bring along the following documents:

  • ID or passport.
  • Proof of address.
  • Tenancy agreement.
  • Birth certificate.
  • If you are a student, you will also need a letter from your University , confirming that you are a student.
  • Immigration documents if you are an international citizen.


Is Prescription Medication Covered by the National Health Service (NHS)?

Unless you fall into one of the exemption categories, you will have to pay for any prescription medication as an international student.

  • You’re a patient in a hospital.
  • You are pregnant or have recently given birth.
  • You’re under the age of eighteen.
  • You hold a medical exemption certificate and have a medical condition such as cancer, diabetes, or epilepsy (MedEx).

The prescription price on the NHS is currently £9.35 per item. You may be able to save money on prescriptions if you obtain a prescription prepayment certificate (PPC). There are two types of PPCs:

  • £30.25 for a three-month PPC campaign
  • £108.10 for a 12-month PPC campaign
Editorial Team
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