Getting the level of help that's right for you
It can sometimes be overwhelming trying to decide which healthcare provider is best placed to help you with your needs. This guide will signpost you to the most appropriate service or clinician depending on the level of support you need. Please consider whether you need to go straight to the Emergency Department at Noble’s Hospital, or whether you can get the help you need elsewhere. Please also remember that the Emergency Department is there to help you if you need urgent or emergency care, so please don’t delay getting the treatment or support you need. You should always dial 999 in the event someone is seriously ill or injured, their life is at risk, or for any other life-threatening emergency.
Self-care – are you prepared?
Being proactive about your self-care can often help you manage some minor conditions at home, and avoid the need to seek medical help. It’s always a good idea to carry a small supply of essential medical items at home – just in case. This includes:
- Paracetamol or Ibuprofen, or another suitable painkiller
- Indigestion tablets
- Diarrhoea medication
- Rehydration sachets
- Antiseptic cream
- A thermometer
- Antihistamine tablets
- Creams for bites and stings
Your local Community Pharmacist can support you with this.
|If you’ve got…||Then you should visit|
||…the Emergency Department at Noble’s Hospital. In the event you need immediate emergency treatment, please call 999 to speak to the Emergency Services Joint Control Room.|
||…the Minor Injuries Unit at Ramsey Cottage Hospital. It’s open from 8am – 8pm, seven days a week. The MIU can provide treatment for a wide range of minor illnesses and injuries that you need medical help with, but where you don’t need support from the Emergency Department at Noble’s Hospital. You should go to the Minor Injuries Unit for the treatment of all minor injuries and illnesses before you go to Noble’s Hospital.|
||…some online resources designed to help you.|
||…your Dentist or Optician. If you don’t have a dentist, you can access the Community Dental Service +44 1624 642785). The emergency rota is available here.
…Specsavers (Douglas) Minor Eye Conditions Service (+44 1624 689500). You can self-refer, or another optician, a pharmacist or your GP may signpost you there.
||…your GP (or MEDS, if out of hours). Isle of Man GPs are conducting both phone and face-to-face appointments right now. You may not be able to see your usual GP – you may be offered an appointment with another GP instead, or perhaps one of the Advanced Nurse Practitioners (ANPs). It’s important that you accept an appointment if you’re offered one, even if it isn’t always with the person you’d usually see.
If you are visiting the Island and don’t have a GP, you can register as a temporary resident with any GP Practice. There may be a charge for GP Services, dependent on whether there are any reciprocal agreements in place with the country in which you live.
||...your Community Pharmacist. They're open six days a week across the Island, with a rota system in place on a Sunday.
They also operate the Island's Minor Ailments Scheme, where they can provide medication for a range of common complaints.
||…your medicine cabinet, because you might have some medication at home that can alleviate your symptoms quickly. If not, a trip to your local Community Pharmacy will help you get the support you need.|
Medical Services for UK Residents
The Isle of Man has a reciprocal healthcare agreement with the UK which means that medical treatment which is needed by a resident of England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Island whilst visiting the Island is provided by the IOM NHS on the same basis as services provided to local residents. If you are a UK resident and you require NHS services whilst visiting the Island then the clinician you see will decide if treatment can reasonably wait until you return home after your visit or if you need the treatment whilst here. If the latter, then the treatment will be provided free of charge save for any charges which would be payable by an Island resident (e.g. prescription charges). UK residents may also register as a temporary resident with an IOM GP their visit to the Island is more than 24 hours and less than three months.
Please note that the reciprocal healthcare agreement does not cover all eventualities and so we advise visitors to obtain their own appropriate level of insurance in addition to this. For example, the agreement is restricted to visits of less than three months' duration and it does not in all circumstances include medical repatriation back to the UK, which can be very costly if needed.
Medical Services for Visitors from Outside the UK.
In line with the provisions of the NHS (Overseas Visitors) Regulations 2011, visitors from other jurisdictions generally are only entitled to accident and emergency services free of charge and all other services, including for hospital admission following accident and emergency treatment, must be paid for. This, together with the potential cost of medical repatriation to a jurisdiction beyond the UK mean that it is imperative that you have comprehensive travel insurance which covers these eventualities or the means to pay significant medical bills should you require medical attention whilst in the island.
Visitors from outside the UK may register with a GP practice as a private patient and will be expected to pay for any consultation, treatment or prescription at the time of the visit.
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