Long-Term Health conditions

DDS Team give advice on the support they give for Long-Term Health conditions

Support for students with long-term health conditions at Queen Mary

Many people may not be aware that long-term health conditions such as long Covid, Irritable Bowel Diseases (e.g. Crohn’s Disease, ulcerative colitis) and sickle cell anaemia are considered disabilities under the Equality Act, even if they are well managed.

Last year, for example, 371 students reported to us that they had a “long standing illness or health condition such as cancer, HIV, diabetes, chronic heart disease, or epilepsy”.

The Equality Act definition of a disability is a long-term condition that affects day-to-day living, with “long-term” being defined as something that will last more than twelve months. As such, many students who have been diagnosed with long-term health conditions since childhood may be unaware that they are eligible for support from the university in terms of what the Equality Act refers to as ‘reasonable adjustments’.


What kind of support would I be eligible for?

The university’s principal service for supporting students with disabilities is the Disability and Dyslexia Service, who are based in our Student Experience directorate. Students can find out more about the service, including how to make an appointment by visiting their website https://dds.qmul.ac.uk/

Amongst the support that students may be eligible for would be what are known at Queen Mary as ‘Examination Access Arrangements’, e.g. extra time, as well as advice on how to apply for Extenuating Circumstances should their condition flare up prior to an assignment deadline, or any other form of assessment.

Information about how to apply for exam arrangements can be found here

The university’s advice guide for applying for Extenuating Circumstances can be found here 

Home students with long-term health conditions may also be eligible for a Disabled Student’s Allowance; this support is provided through Student Finance England and its regional equivalents on a non-means tested basis. Click here for more information about how to apply.


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