Think you need to go to A&E? Think NHS 111 First

If you think you need urgent, but not life threating care, call NHS 111 before turning up to your local emergency department. If, following a conversation with NHS 111, it is appropriate for you to attend the emergency department you may be scheduled a time to attend.

Thinking NHS 111 First will also help you get the most appropriate service and save you an unnecessary, lengthy visit to A&E. This could include self-care, an appointment at your doctors or a nearby Urgent Treatment Centre.

If you have an urgent, but not life threating, health problem please contact 111 BEFORE you attend any of our local A&E departments. This can be done online by visiting or by phone, dialling 111, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and the service is FREE to use.

Ringing 111 first will mean:

  • More patients will speak with a senior medical professional earlier and get the right treatment first time.
  • If someone needs an urgent face-to-face assessment or treatment, this can be arranged immediately, without any further delay – leading to shorter waiting times for all patients.
  • By advising people where and when to go, we can control queues in ED/A&E waiting rooms and lower the risk of catching or spreading COVID-19.

We understand that some people may still walk into ED/A&E for treatment and these patients will continue to be seen.

Patients needing emergency treatment will be seen first. Those whose conditions are not as urgent may need to wait or will be asked to return for a later. Using 111 first will ensure that you get quicker, safer care in the right environment and will help us to better control the risk of the virus spreading.