Medical Centre

The Medical Centre is situated in Leelands, in the heart of the School. It is staffed 24 hours a day in term time by registered nurses. Dr Sara Butler-Gallie is our School Doctor and she holds surgeries at the School three times a week. All students are registered with Sara Butler-Gallie as NHS patients and also have the option to see her partners. We have a visiting physiotherapist and School Counsellor.

The team is available to support students’ physical and emotional needs. We understand how important it is for parents to be involved in their daughter’s welfare and welcome your input.

The Medical Centre staff seek to provide a high standard of evidence-based medical and nursing care to pupils. They aim to:

  • Provide a kind, listening, holistic service that respects the individual and ensures appropriate confidentiality;
  • Promote good physical and mental health and an awareness of health issues, as well as caring for the ill;
  • Maintain good communication and liaison with all levels of the school, parents and carers;
  • Empower students to manage their health needs, with support, so that they can move towards independence in the adult world;
  • To have an up-to-date, professional team providing a high standard of evidence-based care;
  • Work as a team, fostering individual skills and sharing expertise.

Contact Details and Personnel

Medical Centre
Telephone: 01580 242000

Senior Nurse and Medical Centre Manager
Mrs Sarah Rushton
Telephone: 01580 242000

School Doctor 
Dr Sara Butler-Gallie
Orchard End Surgery
Dorothy Avenue
TN17 3AY

01580 713622
Email Dr Sara

Pupils who are unwell

A pupil who is feeling unwell in House will usually see her Matron first. A pupil who feels unwell in School should go to the Medical Centre. The Matron and nursing staff will decide whether the pupil should be cared for in House or in the Medical Centre or is well enough to return to her lessons.

If a pupil is cared for in House, the Matron will discuss this with the Medical Centre and the pupil will be assessed by Medical Centre staff every 24 hours, if her illness lasts for that length of time. Parents are always informed if a pupil needs to stay in the Medical Centre and those who live locally may decide they would rather take their daughter home until she recovers. The nursing staff will update parents regularly by email or phone and welcome calls from parents to discuss progress. Pupils are allowed visitors, including their friends in school, providing they are not infectious.

Chronic Conditions and Disability

All parents of pupils joining Benenden complete medical history and consent forms prior to their daughter's arrival, thus enabling the nursing staff to establish if there are any significant medical conditions which will need particular care.

Meetings can be set up with parents so the Medical Centre staff can learn about a pupil’s condition and benefit from the parents’ experience of how best to care for their daughter. Meetings with other health workers who already support the pupil might also be held, involving the House staff who will be living with the pupil too, so that everyone is aware of the nature of the condition or disability and how best staff might help the pupil to make the most of school life.

Pupils with an identified condition or disability will have an early new girl medical with the School Doctor and the Director of Boarding will develop a welfare plan with the Medical Centre, House staff and parents. Medical Centre staff will write any appropriate medical protocols for school trips. The pupil’s condition will be highlighted on Medical Centre daily record cards along with any specific treatment plans, thus ensuring everyone is able to care effectively for the pupil.

Promoting Health

Good health and wellbeing are close to our hearts at Benenden. The Medical Centre staff provide us with on-site expertise and give us access to a range of other services, which together will help each pupil to learn how to look after herself so she can lead a balanced and fulfilled life both in and beyond school. Please feel free to contact the Medical Centre if you would like further details.