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NHS 24 to be scrapped

Steve
Pro
Posts: 6,679
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Registered: 13-07-2009

NHS 24 to be scrapped

Quote
Medical helpline NHS Direct is to be scrapped as the new non-emergency phone number 111 is rolled out.
Shadow health secretary Andy Burnham criticised the move and the manner of its announcement - apparently via a slip of the tongue by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley during a hospital visit this week.
The Department of Health confirmed that NHS Direct, which is used by 27,000 people a day, would be replaced by 111 when the new non-emergency number is introduced nationally.
NHS Direct provides expert health advice and information to callers, as well as out of hours support for GPs and dental services, telephone support for patients with long-term conditions, pre- and post-operative support for patients.
A spokeswoman said "many" of the services offered by NHS Direct "may be subsumed" by the 111 service.
Providing health advice and information about out-of-hours GPs, walk-in centres, emergency dentists and 24-hour chemists, 111 is currently being trialled in the North-East.
Mr Burnham said: "NHS Direct is a valued service that helps tens of thousands of people every day and takes pressure off A&E. Over the last decade, it has played an important role in the improvements in patient care in the NHS.
"The Health Secretary's statement will stun people across the NHS. It is yet more evidence that Andrew Lansley is on a vindictive mission to break up the NHS, ruthlessly dismantling services before alternatives are in place.
"The manner in which this announcement has been made is quite simply appalling. It shows a total disregard for patients and the thousands of staff it will affect across the NHS. That the Health Secretary feels he can let slip such a major announcement smacks of the arrogance of a Government who believe they are above public consultation."
The Department of Health spokeswoman said: "When NHS 111 is rolled out nationally, it will replace the NHS Direct 0845 4647 telephone number. While NHS Direct will no longer exist as a separate phone number, many of the services provided by NHS Direct may be subsumed by the new NHS 111 service. 111 will give patients one easy to remember number to access non-emergency NHS healthcare wherever they are, 24 hours a day."
11 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

NHS 24 to be scrapped


"The government has confirmed it is planning to scrap the NHS Direct telephone service in England and replace it with a cheaper option.
A new 1-1-1 helpline is already being piloted in north-east England.
It was previously reported that the new service may replace NHS Direct, but now the Department of Health has confirmed it will definitely do so. "
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11120853
Well I don't know if everyone had confidence in NHS24 or not - but I can't see the new system being much if any more liked
Not sure what is happening Scotland, Wales and Northern ireland
alanf
Aspiring Pro
Posts: 1,931
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Registered: 17-10-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

Scotland has NHS24. I'm not sure how that differs from NHS Direct.
http://www.nhs24.com/content/default.asp?page=s1
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,699
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

I've always wondered what the point was of NHS Direct.  Out of hours doctors are already in place, and your own doctor's telephone generally redirects after hours.  Of course GPs used to do out of hours work themselves, but generally don't any more, because their contracts were awarded so that they got lots more money and didn't have to do out of hours work - so they don't.  When i hear people talking about the long hours GPs work, I have to suppress a laugh.
Our friend who's a GP now works fewer hours then he ever did, and if the media are to be believed, the average GP now earns well over £150,000 pa.
John
Steve
Pro
Posts: 6,679
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Registered: 13-07-2009

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

I already made a thread earlier today here....http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,88439.0.html
Seems no one's interested though.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

they forgot to say that the people manning the 111 service  will have next to no training, just like the other overseas call centres, whereas most on the NHS direct are all fully trained nurses
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,244
Thanks: 933
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

Just for Steve I will merge them
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 10,580
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Registered: 01-09-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

Quote from: pierre_pierre
they forgot to say that the people manning the 111 service  will have next to no training, just like the other overseas call centres, whereas most on the NHS direct are all fully trained nurses

Did our esteemed leader/lapdog say whether it would be based in the UK?
http://www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk/en/News/LatestNews/NHS111Launch says
Quote
NHS 111 launches
28 Aug 2010
Commenting on today's news reports about NHS Direct and NHS 111, Nick Chapman, Chief Executive of NHS Direct, said:
"NHS Direct is working hard with all of the local health communities involved in the three 'pathfinder' sites for NHS 111 to make these first tests of the new approach a success for patients and the NHS in their area. When detailed plans are made to roll out the service nationally, we hope NHS Direct staff will be able to contribute their experience to the new service.
Currently, in the North East, NHS Direct is working with the Ambulance Service to handle any calls relating to health information or medicines enquiries. When the pathfinders in the East Midlands and East of England are launched we will be providing call handling, nurse assessment, health information and onward referral where necessary.
The Government has announced their intention to eventually replace the current NHS Direct telephone number (0845 46 47) with the new 111 number. The more memorable number will clearly help patients find the new service more easily. NHS 111 is intended to work in an integrated way with local GPs, out-of-hours services, ambulance services and hospitals, for the benefit of patients and to help the NHS become more efficient.”

So they only meant to change the phone number.
I believe that. [not].

alanf
Aspiring Pro
Posts: 1,931
Thanks: 77
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Registered: 17-10-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

(Not for the first time) a policy decision appear to have been made before the results of a pilot scheme have been evaluated.
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

Sorry if i missed your original thread Steve, i did look for one, before starting a new one, but i clearly missed it - don't say my eyes are playing up as well now.
I've only had occassion to use the Scottish NHS Direct/24 system a couple of times when I had a problem in th emiddle of the night - and to be fair they were reasonably good, and in retrospect having spken to the doctors - they did the right thing. But we have heard a few horror stories.
What's best, i don't know, but it does seem that the GP's got a far too generous package and reduction of work a while a go, and that needs sorting.
But replacing NHS24's degree qualified nurses and doctors with call centre staff with just a few hours training is NOT the solution.
ho hum. Ho hum, I have more serious issues now, and if i have problems i just phone 999 and get an emergency ambulance to A&E !. Not done it yet though.
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 10,580
Thanks: 191
Fixes: 9
Registered: 01-09-2007

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

I suspect most people will either:-
call their GP,
dial 999
Phone Scottish or Welsh NHS Direct/24 (which I believe will continue to operate) - regardless of country of residence.
If I needed to dial 111, I could diagnose my condition better than someone just following a script.

idlewis
Grafter
Posts: 245
Registered: 20-01-2010

Re: NHS 24 to be scrapped

Regarding whether Scotland will keep NHS24, I think when Labour was in Governenment in England  they implemented NHS Direct and Scotland copied when Labour was in power in Scotland and they called it NHS 24 so I dont.t know what the SNP is going to do but I think Scotland will keep NHS 24 until after the Scottish Elections in May 2011.