LEADING GPs have welcomed the increased use of the NHS 111 service for people needing medical advice.
Figures released by NHS England show 20,000 people every day are getting health advice from a doctor, nurse, paramedic or other clinical professional over the phone.
The proportion of telephone calls receiving direct input from clinicians has been steadily increasing and in July, only one in 10 callers were advised to visit A&E.
Dr David Chilvers, clinical lead for Fareham and Gosport Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: ‘We know 111 is working effectively in our area, considerably relieving pressures on other NHS services.
‘There are safe alternatives to A&E for less severe issues, and the increased use of 111 is a sign of ever-increasing public confidence in the service.’
The public called 111 1.4m times in July – an eight per cent increase on last year.
Dr Barbara Rushton, clinical lead for South Eastern Hampshire CCG, added: ‘The NHS is investing in improvements and advances in technology to help patients get the right care, from the right person at the right time.’