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Independents' Day

30% of NHS 111 calls to feature input from clinicians

Almost one in three calls to NHS 111 will be assessed by a clinician under plans to ‘beef up’ the helpline, NHS England has said today.

Speaking to the Public Accounts Committee this morning, Simon Stevens said that they want to increase the number of calls receiving medical input from 22% to ‘north of 30%’ by this winter.

It will partly achieve this by improving interaction with GP out-of-hours services, and integrate all urgent care services.

It comes on the same day that Mr Stevens said all A&Es will include a GP triage service.

Asked by MPs whether a ‘beefed up’ 111 service was on the agenda, Mr Stevens answered ‘it most certainly is’.

He added: ‘Frankly we need a higher proportion of the calls being answered by NHS 111 dealt with by a doctor or nurse or paramedic and we want to increase that proportion from 22% of the calls right now to north of 30% by this coming winter.’

He cited a pilot in North East England that is able to link data from 111, out of hours and the ambulance service to ‘show what effect a higher proportion of clinical call handling will have on the so called “dispositions”, where patients end up being treated’.

NHS England will push for the urgent care services to be integrated, he said.

Mr Stevens told MPs: ‘Many out-of-hours services are already using NHS 111 as their front end call handling but it really makes no sense to have two parallel offers.’

Readers' comments (4)

  • Vinci Ho

    Another argument from Day 1: No need of NHS111, invest properly in OOH to do so.

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  • Rogue1

    NHS111 - that's that thing the politicians bleat on about and pour millions into, that has no evidence it does any good or change the treatment outcomes. Most patients end up going to the GP or some to AED, I'm sure patients can choose between those themselves!
    Get rid of it and fund GP and OOH properly. But that's common sense so it aint gonna happen.

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  • 30%? Disgrace! 100% would ensure patient safety and cost-efficiency savinsg

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  • If we could have forseen 20 years ago that contacting an NHS services, including OOH care was likely only to result in a 20 percent chance of speaking to a clinician, we truthfully would not have believed it. The whole system is rotten and not fit for purpose.

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