Visiting a GP or family doctor in Jersey
Doctors who work in general practice are known as General Practitioners (GPs) - or family doctors. In Jersey GPs surgeries are private businesses, so you will have to pay to see them.
Fees vary slightly from surgery to surgery and additional charges may be made for services like injections and blood tests.
For the first six months after you arrive in Jersey, you will have to pay the full cost if you need to visit a GP. Once you have been in Jersey six months and you have paid any Social Security contributions that are due, you will be able to apply for a Social Security health card. Showing this card at your GP's surgery will give you a discount of £20.00 off the fee.
If you are a French national you can have a health card straight away. This is due to the health agreement that exists between Jersey and France.
A list of GPs can be found in the Jersey Online Directory.
Prescriptions in Jersey
If you have not been in Jersey long enough to have a health card (six months), you will have to pay the full cost of any prescription from your GP.
If you have a Social Security health card, prescriptions are free. Show your health card at any community pharmacy. Different rules apply to prescriptions from a hospital doctor, which must be collected from the hospital pharmacy and may involve a charge.
Whilst the majority of GP prescription items are free, there are some exceptions. A list of items that are free on prescription can be obtained from the Social Security Department or by downloading the latest prescribed list.
Download prescribed list of pharmaceutical products (size 1079kb)
Social Security health card
Why do I need a health card?
You will need a health card to get a subsidy when you visit your GP and to get subsidised free prescriptions.
UK and Jersey health agreement
Who can have a health card?
If you have lived in Jersey for six months or more, and you have paid any Social Security contributions that are due, then you are entitled to a Social Security health card.
If you are a French national you can have a health card straight away. This is due to a health agreement that exists between Jersey and France.
Does my health card cover hospital treatment?
No, the health card does not automatically entitle you to free hospital treatment. The Health and Social Services Department will only provide free emergency hospital treatment (in the Emergency Department). You will have to pay for other hospital treatment and services unless you meet one of the following conditions:
- you have been living in Jersey for at least 12 months prior to treatment
- you have been living in Jersey for at least six months prior to treatment during which time you have been in regular paid employment or paying income tax and you have a valid health card
- you are in 'J' category employment
This includes previous residents who have lived or worked elsewhere for five years or more.
- the cost of treatments covered by an agreement between Jersey and your country of residence or previous residence (known as a reciprocal health agreement)
- if you are visiting an official capacity (eg as consul or ambassador)
- if you require treatment for certain diseases or conditions
Using a health card when moving or returning to live in Jersey
Can I have a health card if I am new to the Island?
If you are new to the Island it is important to register with the Social Security Department as soon as you arrive. Although you will not be able to get your health card for six months, the six months are counted from when you first register.
Once you have been here six months, and have paid any Social Security contributions that are due, you will be eligible for a Social Security health card.
If you are a French national, you can have a health card as soon as you arrive. This is due to a health agreement that exists between Jersey and France.
Can I use my husband or partner's health card?
No. Everyone must have their own Social Security number and health card.
How do I get a new / replacement health card?
To get your health card, you need to bring photographic ID to the reception at Social Security. We'll be able to print your health card while you wait.
Does my child need a health card?
Children do not need their own health card.
If you have a baby, then you should take their birth certificate to the Social Security Department to get a Social Security number. You will be given a Doctor's Registration form. You will need this if you take your child to the GP or pick up a prescription on their behalf.
What happens to my health card if I leave Jersey?
If you leave Jersey for more than three months at a time, then you must return your card to the Social Security Department.
If you come back for a visit and you need to see a GP then you will have to pay the full cost.
If I return to Jersey after living away, can I use my health card again straight away?
Yes, but only to visit a GP or to get free GP prescriptions. You may not be able to get free hospital treatment or social services care.
UK and Jersey health agreement
Health costs when moving or returning to the Island