Urgent medical and health advice is now available across Wales 24 hours a day, seven days a week following the successful rollout of the 111 helpline.
The service, which is run by the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust, and can be accessed online at 111.wales.nhs.uk or by telephone by calling 111, will give people up-to-date health advice and guidance on which NHS service is right for them.
The NHS 111 Wales website includes more than 65 symptom checkers and information about local services, and should be everyone’s first port of call before making a phone call.
But if your health concern is urgent, call handlers on the 111 helpline can also help you get the right treatment at the right time and in the right place.
The service has now been rolled out to all seven health board areas in Wales including Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, which came online last month.
Health Minister Eluned Morgan said:
“Medical advice and information about accessing the right service at the right time is available for free across Wales.
“This fantastic service, supported by £15m of Welsh Government funding, will help people receive the most appropriate care for their health needs and will also help to ease pressure on our vital 999 service
“Together with the NHS 111 Wales website, this easy to remember free phone service will make a real difference to our healthcare service in Wales.”
Richard Bowen, National Programme Director for 111 said:
“Often within the NHS, access to urgent care services is really quite confusing.
Dr Stephen Bassett, National Clinical Advisor for 111, added:
“Until now, people have had to use different numbers to contact different services, but 111 brings them together under one number.
Stephen Clinton, Assistant Director of Operations for the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust, said:
“There’s been a lot of great work over the past six years growing NHS 111 Wales and we’re very proud of what has been achieved.
“Our teams across Wales now help close to a million people each year with their urgent care needs, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”