The healthcare system in Guernsey is significantly different to the UK. Locate Guernsey has produced a useful Factsheet and further information can be found on the States of Guernsey website.
The healthcare system is partly funded by the Guernsey’s Employment and Social Security Committee. Residents pay into an income-related contributions scheme which helps to pay for medical costs.
All primary care is provided on a private basis. Primary care includes GP services, A&E visits, ambulance use, dentists and physiotherapy (requested by a GP).
You will have to pay for both primary healthcare and emergency treatment in Guernsey, but your Social Security payments will contribute towards these charges, and secondary or specialist healthcare is free of charge to residents.
Registering with a GP
Guernsey has three GP partnerships, offering access to a total of nine surgeries throughout the island. Alderney also has its own GP practice.
Most secondary care and specialist services are free to residents of Guernsey. Most specialist doctors who see patients and give care and medical treatment, including surgery, in the Islands, are employed by the Medical Specialist Group (MSG) Some of the specialist doctors who see patients and give medical care in the hospital are employed directly by the local government. This includes doctors in the Emergency Department, and Consultants in Psychiatry, Medical Imaging (Radiology), Pathology and Public Health. There is a wide range of specialist and secondary care services available. See the States of Guernsey website for more details.
The Medical Specialist Group also provides treatment and care that can be paid for privately by the patient.
There is a wide range of Community Services offered to residents of Guernsey to help those of all ages. See the States of Guernsey website for more details.
Guernsey has a number of pharmacies across the island which dispense
‘prescription-only’ medicines and over-the-counter medication. Pharmacists can offer useful advice about minor illnesses and health conditions and also suggest suitable medication or treatment. There is a charge for prescription medicines and some residents are exempt from charges. For more information and a list of pharmacies see the States of Guernsey website: https://gov.gg/pharmacies
Guernsey’s Accident & Emergency Department is situated at the Princess Elizabeth Hospital. It’s important to remember that any emergency medical treatment you receive will incur a charge, this includes ambulance call-out. The Guernsey Ambulance and Rescue Service is provided by the St John Emergency Ambulance Service and operates a 24-hour ambulance service providing accident and emergency cover and paramedic response. Many residents choose to sign up to the Ambulance Subscription Scheme, which means their costs will be covered regardless of how often they use the service.
Many residents choose to take out health insurance to ensure that they are covered for costs that fall beyond their health benefits.
Health insurance is widely available from a range of private providers locally who will be able to offer specialist advice.
There is no reciprocal medical agreement between the UK and Guernsey.
As a Guernsey resident, you won’t be covered for healthcare while visiting the UK. It’s important to ensure that any visitors from the UK also have adequate health insurance so they don’t get caught out.
Guernsey has a thriving natural health community, which is reflected in its wide breadth of on-island specialists. From acupuncture, osteopathy and reflexology to meditation and yoga, islanders have access to many alternative health practitioners, who often work collaboratively to create the best outcomes for their patients. Guernsey also has some first-class nutritionists, physiotherapists and sports therapists. Explore our Directory for more information and visit our Complementary Therapies section.