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Ambulance service to take on a wider 111 role
10:00am Tuesday 24th September 2013 in News
OXFORDSHIRE’S ambulance service could take over non-emergency phone services in Buckinghamshire and provide back-up across the country this winter.
South Central Ambulance Service (SCAS) runs the non-emergency medical number 111 in Oxfordshire, which was rolled out in September, replacing NHS Direct. The number provides assessment and advice for non-life-threatening problems as well as out-of-hour GP appointments and ambulances.
In July, NHS Direct pulled out of 11 of the 46 contracts to run 111 services across the country due to financial problems.
SCAS, which also runs 111 in Hampshire and Berkshire, has been selected as the preferred provider to take over from NHS Direct in Buckinghamshire.
Lynda Lambourne, assistant director for NHS 111 at SCAS, said: “Our control rooms in Bicester and Hampshire have 999 call handlers and dispatchers as well as call handlers for the NHS 111 service. Co-locating the two services enables closer working and helps to ensure a consistent professional response to the public from both operations.”
SCAS is also working with NHS England to consider what support it can provide to other areas this winter.
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