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Londoners to get NHS urgent and emergency care via NHS '111 First'

26/10/2020

How people access parts of emergency care in London is changing, with ‘111 First’.  

All Londoners are being asked to contact NHS 111 online or by phone first, before going to a hospital Accident and Emergency department (A&E/ED) if they have an urgent, but not life-threatening, medical need.  

The new arrangements will also help the NHS to better control the risk of coronavirus while space in A&E waiting rooms is reduced to ensure social distancing.

From 1 December, 111 can arrange an urgent face-to-face A&E appointment during an allocated timeslot anywhere in London, if someone needs it. The aim is to have shorter waiting times and fewer people in A&E.  Arrangements are also in place to let A&Es know if shielding patients are coming so they can be kept safe.

NHS111 can also make direct appointments online, by phone or face-to-face with a variety of health services, including Urgent Treatment Centres, a patient’s own GP, specialised mental health crisis services, dental services and pharmacists for urgent repeat prescriptions and advice.  If needed, an ambulance can also be despatched.

NHS 111 online or by phone, which is being significantly expanded in the capital, is already available at any time of day or night with trained health advisers, doctors, nurses, paramedics or pharmacists able to get people the right NHS care quickly and in the right place.

Arrangements will not change for people with life-threatening illnesses or injuries who should continue to dial 999 and anyone who arrives at A&E without calling NHS 111 will still receive medical care, with those needing emergency treatment prioritised. 

 

For more information on when and how to contact the NHS for urgent or emergency medical help, or how to contact NHS 111, please visit: https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/nhs-services/urgent-and-emergency-care/

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