The first steps to looking after your health at uni

It's important to look after your health and wellbeing while at university, and that starts before you even arrive. Our student support services have given their top tips for taking care of your health.

Student with doctor

1. Get up to date with your jabs

Do you know if your vaccinations are up to date? In addition to having your Covid-19 vaccination, check with your GP whether you have been vaccinated for meningitis (MenACWY) and had both MMR jabs. If you were born after September 1995 you probably had a MenC jab as a young child, but your immunity to the disease decreases over time. So you should get a Men ACWY booster, which has now replaced the MenC jab from your GP at least two weeks before you come to university.

Covid-19 vaccinations

The Covid-19 vaccination is available to everyone aged 16 or over in England. You can visit the National Booking Service to book an appointment at a centre close to home or the university.

Read more about vaccinations in our FAQs.

2. Register with a GP

You’ll need to register with a doctor during your time at university. If you're new to Birmingham, you'll either need to register with the University’s healthcare provider Handsworth Wood Medical Centre (part of the Modality Partnership) or with a GP near your term-time address. You can register for Handsworth Wood Medical Centre online before you arrive, or in person at the Big Welcome Fair in September.

3. Remember your medication

If you take regular medication, make sure you bring it with you and have enough supply until you register with a local GP practice. But it also might be a good idea to bring an emergency medicine box for headaches, colds and dodgy stomachs.

4. Let us know about disability support

If you have a disability or think you might have a disability (including a mental health difficulty, long-term health condition or specific learning difficulty like dyslexia) tell us so we can look at how we may support you. Complete our online profile form and our Disability Team will get back to you.

5. Don't forget your mental health

Looking after your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Starting university can be a stressful time, but we're here to support you. Our Mental Health and Wellbeing Team is on hand, whether you are worried about your mental health and wellbeing, or have an existing mental health condition. The team has wellbeing advisers, mental health advisers, and counsellors/therapists available throughout the year. They can advise on a wide range of topics including Disability Support Summaries (DSS), Disabled Student’s Allowance (DSA), NHS services, and can signpost to information and self-help resources. 

Download our Mental Health and Wellbeing Support guide