As the new academic year is due to begin, NHS 24 is championing the health and well-being of students beginning their college and university journeys in Scotland.
Recognising that many students will be living away from home for the first time, the organisation is highlighting the importance of registering with a GP at their new term-time address, while also ensuring that all vaccines are kept up to date.
To provide students with the essential health knowledge and guidance they may need while studying, NHS 24 has created an online student health resource on NHS inform. Covering topics such as how to access NHS care and information and mental health support, the user-friendly health information site provides all the advice needed with one quick, convenient click.
Dr Ronald Cook, NHS 24’s Associate Medical Director explains why students should put health at the top of preparations for starting uni, he said: “The lead-up to starting your studies can be an extremely busy time for students, but it’s essential to make registering with a GP and dental practice in your new local area a top priority, as these services will be your primary point of contact for healthcare in your new local area. Please do not wait until you are ill before registering with a GP or dentist, as this could delay you accessing the care you need.
“It’s also important to be mindful that as there is more face-to-face contact with lots of new people in colleges and universities, infectious diseases can spread more easily in these kinds of environments. Therefore, it’s also a good idea to check you are fully vaccinated for diseases such a meningitis, HPV, measles, mumps and rubella.”
NHS 24 are engaging directly with students through a series of ‘health roadshows’ at various fresher and welcome events at colleges and universities. This gives students the opportunity to chat in-person with NHS 24 staff and get information on where to access the right care in the right place while studying in Scotland. The team will also be promoting NHS inform and the NHS 24 Online app.
“NHS inform and the NHS 24 Online app are both excellent resources to get free accurate and trusted health advice,” continues Dr Cook.
“Whether you need information on accessing healthcare or medicines, advice on minor ailments or injuries, or where to find health and care services local to you, you will be able to find what you need by visiting NHS inform or downloading the NHS 24 Online app.”
NHS inform’s student health guide can be found at www.nhsinform.scot/studenthealth.