"2 recent experiences of 111"

About: Croydon University Hospital Harmoni / NHS 111

(as the patient),

We’ve used 111 twice in the last 2 weeks. The first time an ambulance came and took my husband to Croydon University Hospital at 4am and we were home by 10. 30am. My husband has a catheter and it was blocked. By 3am, he was in considerable pain so I phoned 111 for out of hours GP services. I spoke to somebody who wanted to assess my husband and who asked too many questions. We knew what was wrong and just needed to speak to a clinician. They called back 10 minutes later to say no one was available and to call 999.

The second time my husband had severe heartburn while eating lunch. My daughter who is a nurse was there and she knew that it was heartburn. They kept asking me ‘is he this or that? ’ They seem to have an obsession with assessing things before doing anything. They don’t seem to be medical people. No wonder the whole process takes so long. My feeling is that NHS Direct is better and quicker.

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Response from Amanda Mayo, NHS 111 Service Director, Harmoni

Thank you for taking the time to post your reply on the Patient Opinion website.

The NHS111 service is supported by software that has been validated by many Royal Colleges to ensure the safety of the questions asked. Many questions will appear irrelevant to the caller however they enable to service to provide a safe and holistic assessment of the caller / patient. It is key that questions, that exclude serious and life threatening symptoms, are asked as we are unable to see the patient.

I am sorry that you feel that NHSD is better and quicker however NHS111 aims to provide a complete assessment from begining to end in one phone call and therefore often negates the need for a call back.

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