NHS GP Service
The University strongly encourages students to register with the local NHS (National Health Service) primary care facility. This is based at the local Community hospital (approximately 20 minutes’ walk from the centre of town) and houses two general practices*. The doctors there (“general practitioners" or GPs) run a comprehensive primary care service, assisted by teams of nurses and healthcare advisors. The waiting time for an appointment is usually up to a week, but urgent appointments are available every day. Please visit your GP's website for more information on how to make an appointment.
* Feddinch and Strathcairn GP practices merged into a new single practice in April 2016. More information on the new Pipeland Practice can be found at http://pipelandmedical.com/
The MenACWY Vaccine- get it before you come
Meningitis and septicaemia (blood poisoning) are rare but life-threatening diseases. They are caused by several groups of meningococcal bacteria - the most common types are A, B, C, W and Y. Young people have the highest risk of getting meningococcal disease, as well as children and babies
Students going to University or College for the first time, including overseas and mature students up to the age of 25, should contact their GP to have the MenACWY vaccine before attending University. Ideally, this should be 2 weeks before-hand.
Even if you have had the MenC vaccine before, this will only protect you against meningococcal C infection, but not against Men W. Having the MenACWY vaccine will therefore also protect you against the other three meningococcal groups (A, W and Y).
Where students are not vaccinated before leaving for university, they should register with a new GP practice once they arrive and arrange to have the vaccine as soon as possible (ideally in fresher’s week to give maximum protection).
For more information please go to http://www.immunisationscotland.org.uk/vaccines-and-diseases/menw.aspx or http://www.nhsinform.co.uk/health-library/articles/m/meningitis/introduction/
Registering With a Doctor
Students are free to register with either of the two practices, however for administrative purposes you are encouraged to register according to your family name. You will always be able to change practices without prejudice if you’re not happy at a later date. If you live outside St Andrews please check the appropriate medical practice website for details of their respective catchment areas.
A new alphabetical split is being introduced for the 2016/17 academic year, although students who are already registered with a GP in St Andrews are not affected by this change. For any student registering for the first time the practice splits are as follows:
|Family name begins with||Medical Practice||Telephone|
|A - Nt||Pipeland Medical Practice||01334 476840|
|Nu - Z||Blackfriars Medical Practice||01334 477477|
Students will be offered the chance to register with one of the St. Andrews’ GP practices when they matriculate on arrival. Although you can be allocated a GP practice according to the first initial of your surname, this is merely for administrative ease and you have a free choice to apply to whichever practice you wish.
However, in order to register, you MUST bring the following:
- A letter from your doctor/physician from your home area detailing:
- Medical conditions experienced over the past year
- Medical conditions from birth which could have relevance to current health
- Any current medication
- Any current treatment
- Any adverse reactions to past medication
- Any allergies
- A full immunisation history
- You should bring at least three months’ supply of any medication you are on.
- Further – if you are international, you should check that this medication is registered and licensed for use in the UK before you come and if it isn’t you should get advice from your doctor at home before you come about what alternatives you could access. You should call the practice in St. Andrews which you wish to join if you wish advice prior to arrival in the UK.
Private GP Service
A private GP service is also available in the St Andrews area. Dr Dan Rutherford holds a clinic at the Student Services premises at Eden Court on Thursdays 12-4pm. At other times he can be seen at his premises just outside St Andrews. To make an appointment:
- Telephone 01334 474209
- Call in at Eden Court during the clinic times above
- Book online at www.gpmed.co.uk (mid September onwards)
See www.gpmed.co.uk for further details and costs.
Minor health issues
If you have a minor health issue and don't want to bother making an appointment with the doctor, you could consult the pharmacist at either Boots the Chemist on Market Street or the pharmacy at St Andrews Community Hospital. The pharmacist can be very helpful in giving advice. Some drugs and medicines can be bought over the counter without a Doctor's prescription.