If you need medical help fast but it’s not a life-threatening situation, you can now call the new NHS 111 number. When you call 111, a trained adviser will ask you questions to find out what’s wrong, give you medical advice and direct you to
someone who can help you, like an out-of-hour doctor or a community nurse.
If the adviser thinks your condition is more serious, they will direct you to hospital or send an ambulance. If you don’t speak English, tell the adviser what language you want to speak and they will get you an interpreter. You can call 111 any time of the day. The call is free, from landlines and mobiles.
You should only call 999 in an emergency – for example, when someone’s life is at
risk or someone is seriously injured or critically ill.
Call 111 if you need medical help fast, but it’s not life-threatening – for example,
• think you need to go to hospital
• don’t know who to call for medical help
• don’t have a GP to call
• need medical advice or reassurance about what to do next
For health needs that are not urgent, you should call your GP.
If a health professional has given you a number to call for a particular condition,
you should continue to use that number.