Next steps for NHS 111

The NHS Long Term Plan sets out how we will continue to support patients to access the correct service by dissolving the historic divide between primary and community healthcare.

Through a single Clinical Assessment Service (CAS), healthcare professionals working outside of a hospital setting, staff within care homes, paramedics and other community-based clinicians will be able to make the best possible decision about how to support patients closer to home, potentially avoiding unnecessary trips to A&E.

In support of this, NHS 111 will maintain its place as the ‘first line of defence’ for the Urgent and Emergency Care (UEC) system by:

  • Starting direct bookings into GP practices across the country, as well as refer on to community pharmacies who support urgent care;
  • Using the CAS to simplify the process for GPs, ambulance services, community teams and social care to make referrals via a single point of access for urgent response from community health services;
  • Supporting full implementation of the Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) model so all localities have a consistent offer for out-of-hospital urgent care, with the option of appointments booked through NHS 111;
  • Becoming the single universal point of access for people experiencing mental health crisis by 2023/24, ensuring that anyone experiencing mental health crisis can call NHS 111 and have 24/7 access to the mental health support they need in the community.

Watch this short video below to find out more about transforming NHS 111 to integrated urgent care.