Health & Well-Being

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Health FAQs

The following will provide you with some useful information across a number of health-related questions as well as resources and links to important services.

Where can I get medical advice?

NHS Direct/NHS 111 is the non-emergency telephone line which provides immediate assistance from highly trained advisors. They will ask you a series of questions about your symptoms, provide medical advice and direct you to the most appropriate medical care. The NHS 111 phone line is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and calls are free from landlines and mobiles.

Do I need vaccinations before starting University?

We strongly recommend that you have the following vaccinations before starting at Marjon:

  • Meningitis
  • MMR

Please speak with your GP to arrange your vaccination.

What is current cost of prescriptions?

The current prescription charge is £8.20 per item. You may be eligible for free prescriptions. For details on eligibility for free prescriptions, please see the NHS website.

Where can I find my local pharmacy?

If you are suffering from a common health problem (for example, a cold) you can visit a local pharmacy and speak confidentially to a pharmacist. The pharmacist can provide general advice on health issues and suitable medication.

You can find your nearest pharmacy on the NHS website.

Where’s the nearest walk in centre?

Walk-in Centre’s provide access to healthcare advice and treatment for minor illnesses and injuries. You do not need to pre-register or make an appointment in advance.

The nearest walk-in Centre to Marjon is the Cumberland Centre, Damerell Close, PL1 4JZ. You can telephone them on 01752 434390.

Where can I find a local dentist?

Some dental practices in the UK provide NHS treatment but many do not. You should ask your dentist if they accept NHS patients. If you already have a GP then your dentist will contact your GP to confirm your NHS entitlement. If accepted, your dentist will ask you for the NHS number on your medical card. Even if you are entitled to NHS treatment, you may still need to contribute towards the cost of your dental treatment. If you are not entitled to NHS treatment, or the dentist you choose does not take NHS patients, you will need to meet full cost of your treatment.

You can find your nearest dentist on the NHS website.

Where can I find my local opticians?

You will normally need to pay for an eye test, and if you need glasses or contact lenses, the optician will give you a prescription. The cost of frames and lenses vary greatly.

You can find your nearest optician on the NHS website.

I’m thinking of travelling during my summer break, how do I get these vaccinations sorted?

Please speak with your GP in the first instance, allowing plenty of time before your trip starts, to ensure you get can any vaccinations you need.

Mental Health

If you feel that you are struggling to cope don’t keep it to yourself.  Talking to someone, such as a friend, doctor or professional may bring you a sense of relief.

Here at Plymouth Marjon University we can offer you support through a range of services, contained below.

Well-being Signposting Service

Well-being Signposting is a service where you book in for an initial 30 minute appointment with Student Support. During this time you will meet with an appropriate member of staff who will discuss your current situation with you, and then will refer you onto (for example) the Student Counsellor, the Disability & Inclusion Advice Service, Student Funding Advice or another appropriate service/professional either internal or external to the University.

To book a 30 minute appointment, you can either fill in our Wellbeing Self-referral Form, or email

You can contact the Chaplaincy:
Telephone: 01752 636700 Ext 2047

However, there are also a range of external sources of support available. Please click here for the Mental Health Resources Pack .

 You can also find a selection of support listed below:

NHS 111 / NHS Direct

NHS Direct provide fast medical help or advice for situations that are not life-threatening. Lines are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Telephone: 111


The Samaritans provide confidential support for those experiencing distress or despair. They are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Telephone: 116 123
Address: 20 Oxford Place, Plymouth, PL1 5AJ (Please check their website for opening hours)

Useful online NHS resources:


Mind provides information on mental health, including:

  • Types of mental health problems
  • Where to get help
  • Medication and alternative treatments
  • Advocacy

Their lines are open 9am – 6pm Monday to Friday (except bank holidays).
Telephone: 0300 123 3393
Text: 86463

Side by Side

Side by Side is a supportive online community where you can be yourself.  It is a safe place to listen, share and be heard.


CALM is available to men experiencing distressing thoughts and feelings. Their lines are open from 5pm–midnight, 365 days a year. They also have a web chat service from 5pm – midnight every day.
Telephone: 0800 58 58 58


The SANEline offers emotional support and information to anyone affected by mental illness, including family, friends and carers from 4:30pm – 10:30pm, 365 days a year.
Telephone: 0300 304 7000

Students Against Depression

Students Against Depression is a website offering advice, information, guidance and resources to those affected by low mood, depression and suicidal thinking.

The Blurt Foundation

The Blurt Foundation is a website and foundation dedicated to helping those affected by depression. This includes resources, support and guidance.

The Zone

The Zone offers a range of information, advice, counselling and support services to 13 – 25 year olds. They run a Drop In service 6 days a week.
Telephone: 01752 206626
Address: 14-16 Union Street, Plymouth, PL1 2SR (please call for opening hours)

Papyrus (HOPELineUK)

Papyrus is the national UK charity dedicated to the prevention of young suicide. They offer confidential help, advice and support specifically for people aged up to 35. Their opening hours are Mon-Fri 10am-10pm, Weekends 2pm-10pm, Bank holidays 2pm-5pm.
Telephone: 0800 068 4141
Text: 07786 209697


Conversations about mental health have the power to change lives #TimeToTalk


What is meningitis?

Meningitis is the inflammation of the meninges, which protect and surround the brain and spinal cord. It is caused by a number of viruses and bacteria. Whilst it can affect anyone at any time, there are particular risk factors that increase the possibility of meningitis in students – especially those in their first year.

The MenACWY vaccine

It protects against disease caused by four of the main groups of meningococcal bacteria – A, C, W and Y. The vaccine is offered to first year university students under the age of 25 – your GP can advise on eligibility. It is advisable to get this at least two weeks before arrival at university. Remember, no vaccine will offer complete protection from meningitis. Vigilance is vital.

What are the signs and symptoms?

Knowing the signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia, remaining vigilant and getting medical help quickly can save lives. Meningitis symptoms can appear in any order and some may not appear at all. Early symptoms of meningitis can include:

  • fever

  • headache

  • vomiting

  • diarrhoea

  • muscle pain

  • stomach cramps

  • fever with cold hands and feet

Meningitis Now support

If you had meningitis prior to – or during – your time at university, you may be struggling with university life. Meningitis Now can provide support. Find out more about Support Services.

Sexual Health

Contraception is free for most people in the UK.

Contraceptive methods protect against pregnancy.  Most methods of contraception won’t protect you against catching or passing on a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI).  Condoms are the only method that protect against both STIs and pregnancy.

Accessing contraceptives and STI testing:

  • You can visit your local GP. If you do not yet have a GP you can find your nearest service on the NHS choices website.
  • The nearest genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinic is located at Derriford hospital. All their tests and treatments are free. Call 01752 431124 for an appointment. Alternatively there you can access their walk in and wait clinic which runs Monday to Friday between 8:30am – 10:30am. Please click HERE to visit their website for further information.
  • If you are 25 or under you can access The Zone for free sexual health advice, STI testing (via your SHiP) and contraception.  Please check the website for times these services are available, available HERE or call 01752 206626.

Types of STIs

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are passed from one person to another through unprotected sex or genital contact. Types of STIs include:

  • Chlamydia
  • Genital warts
  • Genital Herpes
  • Gonorrhoea
  • Syphilis
  • HIV
  • Trichomoniasis
  • Pubic lice
  • Scabies

If you would like to know more about these STIs including symptoms and how they are treated please visit the NHS choices website.

General guidance on sexual health can be found on the NHS website.