+44 (0)1223 330484

College health and wellbeing support

The Hughes Hall wellbeing team

Dr Ben Marshall is Head of Student Wellbeing and Welfare. His role is to ensure that Hughes is a supportive, inclusive and responsive environment in which to study and live.

Ben works closely with students, tutors, the MCR, support staff and the central university to promote wellbeing-friendly practice and offer expert guidance. He is the College’s Safeguarding Lead (so has a key role in ensuring the college is vigilant for and responsive to any signs of abuse in its community) and Disability Liaison Officer (so works with the university’s Accessibility and Disability Resource Centre to ensure the Hughes community’s diverse needs are met).

A psychologist by background, Ben works full-time at Hughes and can be contacted on bmarshall@hughes.cam.ac.uk.

Supporting our students: from right, Dr Ben Marshall is our Head of Wellbeing and Dr Ruth Holdstock is our College Health Practitioner.

College Health Practitioner

The College Health Practitioner, Dr Ruth Holdstock, offers confidential advice and support to students at Hughes Hall. Ruth is available to help with health and welfare needs, ranging from minor illnesses and injuries to support for emotional and mental health issues.

If more specialised help or treatment is required, she will refer you, or point you in the right direction, whether your GP, the University Counselling Service or other local services. She can also dispense a range of over-the-counter medicines. The College Health Practitioner is based in the Health Centre (1A Chancellor’s Court): https://map.cam.ac.uk/#52.200982,0.132802,19,YL21-K1XK-UW22.

Please see the College Health Practitioner Moodle site here for the latest availability and to book an appointment. Ruth’s usual working hours are Monday 9am-5pm, Wednesday 9am-5pm, and Thursday 9am-2:30pm. 

You can email Ruth on: health@hughes.cam.ac.uk.

Please Note: Unfortunately an error message will appear when a booking is made, please ignore this, Moodle will send you an email confirming your booking and a reminder on the day.

College Counselling

At Hughes, our students can access counselling support from qualified counsellors through drop-in sessions in College which can be booked via the Moodle Booking system here. Following a drop in, further one-to-one sessions can be arranged to provide support with significant difficulties.

Out of hours support

  • For health concerns that are not urgent please contact your GP (see below for information about registering with at GP)
  • For urgent medical assistance out of hours contact NHS 111 https://111.nhs.uk/ or call 111 from any phone.
  • For urgent mental health issues contact the First Response Service to speak to mental health professionals. To access this service telephone 111 and select Option 2.
  • In the case of life-threatening emergencies call 999 to request an ambulance.  If you call an ambulance inform the Porters (01223 330484) so they can direct them to your location.

Registering with a GP

In the UK, a local medical doctor is referred to as a ‘General Practitioner’ – often abbreviated to ‘GP’.

Registering with a GP in Cambridge is essential to ensure that you are able to access health services quickly and easily while you are at University here. This is especially important if you have an ongoing health condition, such as asthma, or problems with your mental health.

Cambridge GPs are experienced in dealing with students, and working with the University and Colleges. This is very important if you are ill in the lead up to, or during your examinations as you may need exam arrangements or allowances, and this may require medical evidence from a GP.

GPs in Cambridge work on a geographical basis so you are required to register with the one closest to your accommodation address.

Students living in College accommodation

If you are living in College there are two practices which are close enough to accept Hughes Hall students:

Students living in privately rented accommodation

If you are not living in College you can use this website Find a GP – NHS (www.nhs.uk) to find the one nearest to you – just enter your postcode in the box. You will need to take your student card with you the first time you go to the practice so that they can verify your identity and complete your registration.

Confidentiality statement

Information shared with the Wellbeing Team is confidential. If it is in your interest for information to be shared with other Health Professionals or University Staff, then informed consent will be gained first. However, confidentiality will need to be broken if there appears to be a serious imminent risk, or if there are serious illegal activities where there is a risk to your own or others’ safety. In this situation informed consent will be gained wherever possible, but your safety and that of others will take priority.

A notice about GDPR and your nursing records explains why nursing records are kept, how your information may be stored, how it is kept safe and confidential and your rights in relation to this.

Updated 12.6.24