We want to understand how you decide which service to use when you need medical help, how you access the services, and what your experiences are.
Urgent care services are for when people need medical advice or treatment for an urgent health condition on the same day. This covers illnesses which are not life threatening but cannot wait until a routine appointment with a GP or other healthcare professional is available. These may be conditions and injuries such as sprains and strains, minor scalds or burns, skin infections, feverish illness or abdominal pain.
It is important that people can get the right care in the right place, whenever they need it. We know that it can be confusing to know which service is the right one to use, and we want to help make this clearer.
The NHS 111 service was launched at the end of 2020 and encourages people with an urgent, but not life-threatening health problem, to contact NHS 111, online or by calling 111, before attending an Emergency Department (A&E). By doing this they can be directed straight to the right service for their needs.
The purpose of NHS 111 is to:
- Reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission in A&E settings
- Protect A&E for those whose need is most urgent
- Signpost and support the public to receive the right care in the right place
- Reduce the waiting time for treatment
The NHS 111 service will take some details from patients to ensure they are directed to the right service, first time.