NHS 111 is the number to call if someone needs medical help but they are not in a life-threatening situation.
The easy to remember, free to call number is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to help people access the care they need, wherever they are and no matter what time of day it is.
Further information is available on NHS Choices here.
The provider of the NHS 111 service for residents in Berkshire is South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. NHS 111 now takes the calls to GP out-of-hour services, NHS Direct and any numbers previously used to access these services will have messages advising callers to dial 111.
On dialling 111 callers are put through to a team of highly trained advisers and experienced nurses and paramedics, receive a clinical assessment and are directed to the local service that can help them best at that time. This could be by providing details of the nearest pharmacy, direction to an appropriate service such as the GP out of hours service or even dispatching an ambulance if that is required.
The service increases the efficiency of the NHS by directing people to the right service at the right time and by avoiding delays and inappropriate use of services such as 999 and Accident and Emergency departments, enabling them to be used by those who really need them.
There are only three numbers people need to know:
- 999 for life-threatening emergencies
- their GP surgery for routine health conditions and
- 111 for urgent/unplanned health conditions or when they are unsure of which service to access.