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New postings and accessing healthcare

Healthcare arrangements for you and your family

Healthcare advice for you and your family when relocating within the UK or returning home from an overseas posting.

If you are unsure about anything in relation to you or your family's healthcare, you should speak to your unit or local HIVE as soon as possible.

The provision of healthcare to you and your family will depend on where you live.

Serving personnel
You will see little difference. Your routine healthcare will continue to be delivered through your local defence primary healthcare (military) medical centre.

Your family
You may find that arrangements change, as not all UK military medical centres offer a Families Practice. If the local medical centre does not offer a family service, then your family must register with a local NHS GP practice. If you're unsure whether your family will be able to access a military medical centre, speak to your unit or Local HIVE immediately.

GPs and other health services

The choice of local NHS GP for your family will depend on your new home address. Your family can register with a GP before they relocate, as soon as they know where they are going to be living.

Registering with a dentist is different. When you move, simply find a dental practice that's convenient for you, this may be near your home or work, and phone them to see if there are any appointments available.

Information on GPs, dentists and other NHS services, such as accessing hospitals, opticians, pharmacists and support for carers can be found using:

Once your family member has registered with a GP, their existing medical records will be transferred. If they have specific health needs, including medication, treatment and/or additional care, they should discuss this directly with their medical officer and ask for a summary of their medical records before moving.

Specific health needs

If a family member has specific health needs, it is essential that the GP and other services are made fully aware of their needs when registering and before they move. This will ensure the care they currently receive continues. Don't forget to make sure maternity services are in place if a member of your family is pregnant, and that your local health visitor is aware of under fives.

The GP should also be alerted if family members are undergoing a course of treatment or are on a waiting list for treatment. These needs will then be taken into account when they move, allowing for the care they are receiving to continue.

In line with the Armed Forces Covenant, you and your family are entitled to the same access to health services as the general public in the area you live, and should not be disadvantaged in accessing health services.

Page last reviewed: 24/06/2015

Next review due: 24/06/2018