What is NHS 111?
NHS 111 is the free, easy to remember number to call when you need medical help fast no matter where you are or what time it is.
When should you use NHS 111?
You should use the NHS 111 service if you need help or advice urgently but it’s not a life-threatening situation.
You should call 111 if:
- It’s not a 999 emergency
- You don’t think it can wait for an appointment with your GP, or
- You don’t know who to call for medical help
For less urgent health needs, you should still contact your GP or dentist in the usual way.
For immediate, life-threatening emergencies, patients should dial 999 .
How does NHS 111 work?
Callers dial 111 for free and a trained Health advisor, supported by clinical professionals, will assess their health care needs using clinically developed software. This will signpost the most appropriate local health care provider according to the patient’s needs. Services include everything from local pharmacies and dentists to walk-in minor injury units and the Out of Hours GP service plus much more.
As part of a national campaign to ensure that patients are directed to the right service as quickly as possible, the new NHS 111 service aims to:
- Improve the public’s access to urgent healthcare services
- Increase the efficiency of the NHS
- Replace NHS Direct with a service that provides more local options for patients
- Reduce pressure on the ambulance service / A&E departments
Self Care Patient Information Leaflet