+44 (0)1223 330484

College Nurse and wellbeing support

The Hughes Hall wellbeing team

Student Wellbeing and Welfare

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.

Dr Ben Marshall, Head of Student Wellbeing and Welfare, College Safeguarding Lead and Disability Liaison Officer

He sits on the Senior Tutor’s leadership team and works closely with students themselves, tutors, the MCR, support staff and the central university to promote wellbeing-friendly practice and offer expert guidance. Ben 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). He is currently developing an overarching wellbeing strategy for the college in order to bring together and advance good practice under a set of core themes.

Ben is a psychologist by background and has led programmes of wellbeing work for Mind, NHS partnerships and in other higher education institutions before joining us in this newly created role in September 2022. Ben works full-time at Hughes and can be contacted on bmarshall@hughes.cam.ac.uk.

College Nurse

The College Nurse, Debbie Ellis, offers confidential advice and support to students and staff of Hughes Hall. Debbie is available to help with health and welfare needs, ranging from minor illnesses and injuries to support for emotional and mental health issues.

Debbie Ellis, College Nurse, is available for appointments on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays

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 Nurse 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 Nurse Moodle site here for the latest availability and to book an appointment. Debbie’s working hours are as follows:

  • Monday  9am- 3pm
  • Wednesdays  9am -4pm
  • Thursdays  9am – 3pm

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 Counsellor

Our College Counsellor, Isha Mehta, offers drop-in sessions for students 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.

Isha Mehta, College Counsellor

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. If you have any concerns related to COVID-19 please check our ‘Living with COVID’ page for further information and useful links.

For urgent mental health issues contact the First Response Service where you can speak to trained mental health professionals. To access this service telephone 111 and select Option 2.

In the case of life-threatening emergencies only please call 999 to request an ambulance.  If you call an ambulance please 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.