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What to do if you need medical support

Find out how and where to register with a doctor and get your jabs

You need to be registered with a local doctor to access NHS health services when you're at uni.

It's important that you register with a doctor (also known as a General Practitioner or GP) at a GP Surgery as soon as you arrive in Portsmouth. Don't wait until you're ill.

Health professionals at GP surgeries like the Practice Nurse can offer help in areas such as contraception, cervical smear tests and flu jabs, and a range of other physical and mental health conditions.

How to register

  • it's a good idea to choose a surgery that's close to your home. If you live in University accommodation, ask at the reception of your Halls of Residence for your nearest doctors' surgery.
  • Contact a local surgery with your personal details and the name and address of your current doctor.
  • If you have an ongoing condition like asthma, diabetes or epilepsy, it's even more important to register with a local GP as soon as possible. Visit the GP for a health check (which is free to new patients), so they know who you are and what medication you're taking.
  • Make sure you don't leave your repeat prescriptions to the last minute.
  • If you change your term-time address, please contact your GP practice and let them know your new address. If they lose contact with you, you may no longer be registered with your GP.

Southsea GP surgeries

If you live in Southsea, the nearest doctors' surgeries are:

Central/North Portsmouth and Cosham GP surgeries

If you live in Central Portsmouth, North Portsmouth, or Cosham, the nearest doctors' surgeries are:

Find a GP

Walk-in clinics

If you have a minor ailment and aren't registered with a GP surgery in Portsmouth, you can get urgent NHS medical care at a walk-in clinic. You don't need to make an appointment.

St Mary's Urgent Treatment Centre is a walk-in clinic on Milton Road in Milton.

Walk-in clinics can be extremely busy. You could wait up to 4 hours for treatment. You can check the current waiting time and opening hours on St Mary’s urgent Treatment Centre's website.

Pharmacy advice

You can get advice about minor ailments such as bugs, viruses, minor injuries, aches and pains from your local community pharmacy or chemist.

The nearest pharmacy to the University campus is Laly's Pharmacy on Guildhall Walk.

For more information on pharmacists and when they might be able to help, visit PharmacyFirst.

NHS 111 online

The NHS 111 online service can assess and direct people to the most appropriate local service, including urgent treatment centres, GP practices, and consultations with a pharmacist. And, if needed, it can arrange a call back from a nurse, doctor or paramedic.

NHS 111 online is an easy and convenient way to get urgent help for a wide range of health problems. It could even save you a trip to the Emergency Department, as it is estimated that up to two-fifths of attendances are avoidable or could be better treated elsewhere.

If you need medical help fast, use NHS 111 online to get assessed and directed to the right place for you. 


NHS 111 online logo

Protect yourself and others with vaccinations

It's important that you keep up with your recommended vaccinations, both for your protection and others. As a student you're at higher risk of infections because you'll be meeting and mixing with lots of new people, some of whom may unknowingly carry different bacteria. If you're uncertain about your protection, contact your GP.

More information for international students and healthcare is available on MyPort.


We encourage everyone to take up vaccination against Covid-19 provided by the NHS. This includes international students - anybody aged 16 or over in the UK is eligible for the Covid-19 vaccination for free, regardless of their nationality or immigration status. Book a Covid vaccination appointment through the NHS.


Some strains of meningitis and septicaemia (blood poisoning) can be prevented with vaccinations. 

If you're coming to university for the first time and are under the age of 25, you should contact your GP to request the MenACWY vaccine as soon as possible. This is especially the case if you missed having it at school or before coming to the UK to study.

It's also important that everyone is aware of the signs and symptoms of both meningitis and septicaemia, including:

  • violent and severe headaches
  • high temperature/fever
  • vomiting
  • neck stiffness
  • dislike of bright lights
  • drowsiness/lethargy
  • joint pains
  • fits
  • a rash may appear

Get medical help immediately if you or your friends experience these symptoms - call NHS 111 for urgent advice, or 999 in a medical emergency. For more information visit the NHS website.

Sexual health

If you're sexually active at uni, it's important to take care of your sexual health. Your sexual health can impact on your physical and mental wellbeing, but it's easy to stay safe if you know how.

When thinking about your sexual health, consider the need to:

  • Protect yourself from sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
  • Use contraception to protect yourself from STIs and unplanned pregnancy
  • Develop confidence to talk about sexual health with your partner and GP

Make sure you know the risks and how to avoid them by reading up about sexual health:

  • Sexwise – honest advice about contraception, pregnancy, STIs and pleasure
  • NHS – their sexual health pages provide information on general sexual health and STIs

Sexual health services

You can get medical support for your sexual health, including free contraception and STI checks, from the following services:

  • Your local doctor
  • Local sexual health clinics – in Portsmouth, you can visit St Mary's Community Health Campus and Solent Sexual Health Services
  • Pharmacy Contraception Pilot - this free service allows residents access to oral contraception. Find a pharmacy.

  • HIV testing - for quick, free and confidential testing go to the Let's Talk About It website.
  • In England, call the Sexual Health Line on 0300 123 7123 or NHS 111
  • In Wales, call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47
  • In Scotland, call NHS 24 on 111.
  • In Northern Ireland, call the FPA helpline on 0345 122 8687

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