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How to get medical assistance in England when you are a foreigner

Last summer I had a problem with a wound on my arm, it needed fast medical help.
To get it I went to a hospital (duh). They had a special entrance for emergency affairs, and even tho I didn't yet have National Insurance Number, I did receive help after filling a simple form ( didn't need a passport etc, just basic data like address)
Good thing is that they asked me about my nationality and I received a form with polish translation on it, and doctor who I was consulting with, had a special book in which he had translations of most common terms. I had to wait about 30 minutes to receive consultation, but it wasn't that bad.
Assistance was great, I don't understand how people in England can moan about it, they obviously haven't been to Poland ever.

Anyway, that was an emergency, what if we have a tooth ache or something that is bothering us, like a fever etc.

An important thing I want to note here, if you just have a simple cough or feel head ache, don't go to doctors, because in England you tend to visit doctors only with important matters that simple medicines from pharmacy can't solve.

So, about doctors, to get to a NHS (National Health Service) doctors you first have to register at one, then after you are registered there (you will need your NI number again) you have to set an appointment. Thats the worse part, because even tho people sign up only with more or less important issues, it will probably take few days, over a week to get an appointment, you will probably have to take a day off to get there in time as well, so try not to be ill :D

Prices

From what I know, till you are 18 years old, you have free (it's paid from taxes) dental protection, which means that all fillings etc will be free. After that it's very, very expensive, I'm not sure about the prices, and they vary in different parts of UK anyway.

About medicines, basic ones you will receive in emergency situations for free, others I would describe as averagish priced.

Remember, general rule about health is that it's better to prevent then to cure.
So stay fit and healthy, brush your teeth and it'll surely save you lots of money and effort. :D

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