England in detail

Health & insurance

Before You Go

Health Insurance

  • If you're an EU citizen, a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) – available from health centres or, in the UK, post offices – covers you for urgent medical treatment, including pre-existing medical conditions and routine maternity care. However, it will not cover costs such as being flown back home in an emergency, so private travel insurance will also be needed.
  • Citizens from non-EU countries should find out if there is a reciprocal arrangement for free medical care between their country and the UK.
  • If you do need health insurance, make sure you get a policy that covers you for the worst possible scenarios, including emergency flights home.

In England

Availability & Cost of Healthcare

  • Quality medical treatment is widely available at National Health Service (NHS) hospitals throughout the country, and (much more expensively) through private medical practices.
  • Chemists (pharmacies) can advise on minor ailments such as sore throats and earaches. In large cities, there's always at least one 24-hour chemist.
  • For medical advice that is not an emergency you can call the NHS 111 service (phone 111).

Tap Water

The tap water is safe to drink.