Medical students with disabilities are welcomed and valued by UK medical schools. People with experience of disability are uniquely positioned to understand the impact of disability on their lives and the lives of others. Medicine overall benefits from these perspectives as it strives to represent the society from which it is drawn and will serve.
Under UK law a person is disabled if they have a long-term condition (one that lasts over a year) that impacts on their day-to-day life including their ability to study. Using this definition, the following conditions are considered to be disabilities:
- Physical disabilities such as mobility issues or hearing impairments
- Long term health conditions like diabetes or ulcerative colitis
- Mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression
- Specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia and dyspraxia
- Recurring or fluctuating conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS)
If you have a disability, ensure that you declare this on the UCAS form by ticking the relevant box. Disclosing a disability on your form will not affect the screening of your application. If an offer is made, the medical school will discuss your requirements in detail and may also seek advice from its Occupational Health Service or Disability Unit.
If you are unsure about how your disability might fit into the application process, or into studying medicine, then do not hesitate to enquire directly with the medical schools you are considering. There is an obligation for medical schools to make reasonable adjustments for students with disabilities where the disability would not prevent the student from fulfilling the required competencies to graduate and practise as a doctor.
- Supporting and encouraging applicants with a disability
- A guide for prospective medical school applicants with disabilities or long-term health conditions
- Medical students: professional behaviour and fitness to practise
- Gateways to the profession
- Applying for Disabled Students’ Allowances