If you need medical help but you’re not sure where to go, then please Talk before you walk. You can call NHS 111 free, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and, where appropriate, a clinical advisor will assess your symptoms, decide what medical help you need and advise where you need to go.
Clinical advisors can arrange an appointment for you at an Urgent Treatment Centre, 8 to 8 Centre or an out of hours GP if your condition means you need to see a health care professional within the next 12 hours.
Clinical advisors can also give you self-care advice and information.
You should call NHS 111 if:
- You need medical help fast, but it is not a 999 emergency
- You think you need to go to accident and emergency or another NHS urgent care service
- You do not know who to call for medical help or you do not have a GP to call
- You require health information or reassurance about what to do next
For less urgent health needs, you should still contact your GP in the usual way.
An inclusive NHS 111 service
NHS England has produced a short film called ‘An inclusive NHS 111 service’, to help people with a learning disability, autism or both, understand how and when to access the service, and what to expect. The film, created with the support of many self-advocacy groups, forms part of NHS England’s on-going work to ensure that everyone has access to NHS services.
If you have difficulties communicating or hearing, you can use the NHS 111 service through a textphone by calling 18001 111. Calls are connected to the TextDirect system and the textphone will display messages to tell you what is happening. A typetalk relay assistant will automatically join the call. They will talk back what you've typed to the NHS 111 adviser and, in return, type back the adviser’s conversation, so you can read it on your textphone's display or computer.
NHS 111 also offers a video relay service that allows you to make a video call to a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter. The BSL interpreter will call an NHS 111 adviser on your behalf, and you will then be able to have a real-time conversation with the NHS 111 adviser via the interpreter. You'll need a webcam, a modern computer and a good broadband connection to use this service. Visit NHS 111 BSL interpreter service for more details and an online user guide.
For those that own a mobile device such as a tablet, laptop or mobile phone, download the text relay app here for different options.