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Of calls answered by NHS 111 in December, 79.4% were answered within 60 seconds. This was far lower than in November 2014 (90.6%), which was previously the lowest proportion in 2014. Since NHS 111 began in 2010, only March 2013 was lower (78.3%).
In December 2014, 6.1% of calls were abandoned after waiting longer than 30 seconds without being answered, more than in November 2014 (2.2%), which was previously the highest number in 2014. This is only the third month, along with December 2010 (8.3%) and March 2013 (8.1%), that the standard of less than 5% calls abandoned has not been met at the national level.
There were 1,398,166 calls offered to the NHS 111 service in December 2014, which is equivalent to 45 thousand per day, or 16 million per year. This was much higher than the previous largest figure of 1,112,633 from May 2014, or 36 thousand per day.
The mean average episode length of a call was 15 minutes 57 seconds in December 2014, less than in February and March 2014, but more than in all other months in 2014.
Of calls answered, 86% received triage in December, the same as in November 2014.
Calls triaged are those where the NHS 111 call handler opens and uses the clinical assessment tool (NHS Pathways). Calls not triaged include, for example, follow-ups of previous calls, or calls where the caller is unable or unwilling to give specific details about the patient’s condition, such as enquiries about contact details for pharmacists or other local care services.
Previously, for the destination that callers are recommended to, we have shown percentages as a proportion of all calls answered, whether triaged or not triaged. We now display percentages as a proportion of all calls triaged. This provides a consistent measure which is not disturbed when there are many calls that do not need triage.
It also means the calculation is more reliable, because the numerator and denominator supplied by data providers are from the same software data source.
Of calls receiving triage in December 2014, 11% had ambulances dispatched, 7% were recommended to A&E, 64% were recommended to primary care, 4% were recommended to another service, and 15% were not recommended to any service. For November 2014, these figures were 63% primary care, 3% another service, and otherwise the same.
Of all calls answered, 11% were offered a call back in December 2014, a little higher than 10% in November and 9% in most other months in 2014. Of those callers offered a call back in December, 45% were called back within 10 minutes, less than 50% in November. The average for 2014 was 50%.
On average, 29% of call time was handled by clinical staff in December 2014, the same as in October and November 2014. In December, 21 of the 45 sites provided this information.
Download NHS 111 Statistical Note for December 2014 (DOCX, 829KB)
Download 2013-14 NHS 111 MDS Publication Timetable (DOCX, 16KB)
Pre-release Access List
This document lists people who have access to the statistics in the 24 hours before publication:
Download NHS 111 Pre-Release Access List 30th January 2015 (DOCX, 31KB)
You can obtain further details by contacting the relevant statistical team at the following address:
5E24 Quarry House