FAQs

Why should I register with the University Health Service?

As an extra service to that provided by your GP we can offer medical advice and local health information which might save a visit to your GP.
You can register with and use the University Health Service wherever you live and whoever your GP is.
Registering with us will save you a lot of time answering questions about your previous medical history if you are unwell and want to use our walk in or phone in service.

How and when can I register with the University Health Service?

You can either do this online or drop into one of the open access sessions advertised on Unilife and the
Health Centre website.
You will be required to complete a registration form and sign a data protection document. This will not affect your GP registration in any way.

Please check Unilife for available appointments and drop in sessions at Pontypridd, Caerleon and Newport City campus.

How and when can I access the University Health Service?

You can either attend a drop in session, book an appointment with the nurse via Unilife or telephone Pontypridd Campus 01443 482081.

For students wishing to make an appointment with the nurse at Caerleon or Newport City Campus please book an appointment via Unilife or call 01633 432022 / 01633 432137 (Caerleon) 01633 432505 (Newport City Campus).

Why should I also register with a local GP if I have moved away from home?

  • Current NHS advice is that you should be registered with a doctor where you live for most of the time. This is likely to be the Cardiff, Newport or Treforest area if you have moved away from home to come to the University of South Wales.
  • If you become unwell and need to see a doctor it can be a problem if you are not registered
  • If you need to see a doctor locally they have none of your previous history unless you are registered
  • Your doctor at home knows you and should be willing to see you as a temporary resident when you are back at home in the vacations

What shall I do if I am unwell?

There are various places you can get advice without an appointment:

  • You can either access the Health Service drop in sessions advertised on Unilife or phone the Health Centre on Pontypridd campus on 01443 482081 or phone 01633 432022/ 01633 432137 (Caerleon campus) 01633 432505 (Newport City Campus) for advice during our opening hours.
*For general Health enquiries please email health@southwales.ac.uk.
  • Your local pharmacy can offer advice on a wide range of minor ailments and recommend medicines available over the counter
  • You can contact NHS direct Wales on 0845 46 47 Twenty four hours a day for telephone advice or consult the NHS Direct website encyclopaedia about your symptoms and possible treatments

What should I do if I become unwell out of hours?

  • NHS direct Wales on 0845 46 47 is available 24 hours a day for telephone advice or consult the encyclopaedia at the NHS Direct website about your symptoms and possible treatments
  • If you are registered with a doctor you can ring your GP’s number and you will be given the telephone number of the local GP Out of Hours Service (OOHS)

How do I see a Doctor?

You will usually need to book an appointment and be registered with a Practice in the area in which you live.

  • If you live in Treforest you can register with the Ashgrove Surgery at the Health Centre and book your appointments either directly with the surgery or through nursing staff at the Health Centre if you want to be seen at Health Centre clinics
  • If you live in Cardiff you can register with the Atrium Health Clinic either at the Health Centre in Treforest or collect a registration pack from the Atrium Advice Centre, which includes details of how to book appointments
  • If you live in the Newport area you can register direct at the Medical Centre for various Newport GP surgeries, contact The Medical Centre, Caerleon campus for more information.

If you live elsewhere you can find your nearest GP surgery in the Local Services section of the NHS Direct Wales website

When should I visit an Accident & Emergency Department (A&E)?

Attend A&E if you have an acute illness, chest pain or breathing problems or a painful injury less than 2 days old

When should I call an ambulance?

Only if you have a medical emergency, a critical or life threatening problem should you call 999
Here are some examples of an emergency:

  • Unconsciousness
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • A suspected stroke (see further information in 'need medical help now’ at the NHS Direct website
  • A suspected heart attack (see further information in 'need medical help now’ at the NHS Direct website
  • Heavy blood loss
  • Serious injury
  • Severe burns

If you are feeling unwell, but the problem is not a medical emergency please call NHS Direct Wales on 0845 46 47.

How do I obtain Contraception and Emergency contraception?

  • Emergency contraception is available free of charge for women aged 14-25 from some pharmacies in the Newport, Treforest and Pontypridd area. In pharmacies in other areas there is a charge. It is also available free of charge to women of any age from contraceptive clinics and GPs.
  • For details of local contraceptive clinics contact the Health Centre or NHS Direct Wales 0845 46 47 or local services section at the NHS Direct website
  • Contraception is also available from your GP

How can I get free condoms?

If you are under 25 you can access the drop in sessions advertised on Unilife to register for a C card at the Health Centre, Treforest Campus / Medical Centre, Caerleon campus or local contraceptive clinics. Once you have registered you can use your C card to pick up free condoms either from the Health Centre, Treforest or Medical Centre, Caerleon Campus or local contraceptive clinics.

If you are over 25 free condoms are available from contraceptive clinics.

How do I access Sexual Health advice and get tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs)?

Details of clinics in Newport, Pontypridd and Cardiff are advertised on the Health Centre website. Please contact the Health Centre, Pontypridd or Medical Centre, Caerleon campus for more information or NHS Direct Wales 0845 46 47 or local services section at the NHS Direct website

What do I do if I need to see a dentist?

You will need to contact a dentist and ask if they can take you on as an NHS patient. Consult the Health Centre website or the NHS Direct website for details of local dentists and NHS charges.

  • Check ups are free in Wales for those under 25 and over 60
  • Treatment is free for full time students under age 19

What if I have a dental emergency?

Phone your Dentist for an appointment or if you are not registered:

One off appointments are available in cases of severe pain, severe bleeding and trauma only.

  • In Pontypridd contact: Mon-Fri : 9-4.30 01443 680166 After 6.30 and week ends 0300 1235060
  • In Cardiff contact: Mon-Fri 8.30-5 02920 190175 Weekends and Bank Holidays 02920 444500
  • In Newport contact: Mon-Fri 9am on the day 01633 488389, or after 6.30 and weekends 0845 6020252
  • Or consult NHS Direct Wales on 0845 46 47 or the NHS Direct website

What do I do if I need to see an optician?

For details of local opticians see the local services section at the NHS Direct website You will need to pay for an eye test and glasses or contact lenses unless you have an HC2 exemption. (See How do I get help with NHS charges below )

Where do I get information about Meningitis?

The University makes information available in all Halls of Residence rooms and publishes a Meningitis Update each year available on the Health Centre website which includes contact details of Meningitis charities which run free 24 hour helplines. Alternatively you can access information through the encyclopaedia at the NHS Direct Wales website

Where do I get information about Swine Flu?

You can get general information from the encyclopaedia at www.nhsdirect.wales.nhs.uk

Where do I get information about other infectious diseases?

Consult the encyclopaedia at the NHS Direct Wales website

What do I do if I need to have a medical examination or report?

This is a private arrangement between you and the GP who holds your medical records for which there will be a charge. Contact your GP surgery directly to find out what their arrangements are and what the cost will be.

What do I do if I need travel vaccinations and advice?

Contact your GP practice nurse well in advance of the date you intend to travel.

What do I do if I need to get other vaccinations?

Contact your GP practice in the first instance for advice.

What do I do to get help towards NHS charges?

Prescriptions are free in Wales but you will be expected to pay for over the counter medicines for minor ailments. For help towards dental and optical charges you need to fill in an HC1W form available from the Health Centre or Benefits Agency and return this to the Benefits Agency in the envelope provided. Your claim will be assessed and you will receive either an HC2 for full help or HC3 for limited help towards costs

What do I do if I want to see a doctor privately?

Contact The Independent General Practice
Or Spire Healthcare for self pay treatment enquiries