Rob Bacon, NHS111’s national medical director, said that the service has a long-term future.
Changing the public’s perception of the service, simplifying the patient journey and consistently improving the patient experience are among the key priorities for NHS111.
Bacon said at the NHS111 Focus on Futures event, held in Manchester yesterday, that the service has embarked on “a significant and complex programme of change, some of which will take three to five years to complete”.
“Developing an integrated NHS111 will form an integral part of the urgent and emergency care service. We must continue to listen to patients who use the service, as well as clinicians and commissioners,” he said.
Also speaking at the event Dr Ossie Rawstorne, national medical advisor to NHS111, explained that these changes had been prompted by the Five Year Forward View and The Keogh Urgent and Emergency Care Review, both published in 2014.
Dr Rawstone said: “We recognise within NHS111 that we need to be better at resolving patient problems at the first touch point in terms of both the breadth and depth of advice we offer them. And crucially patients want something that feels much more joined up and seamless.”
He said the service had learned a lot from the pressures of last winter in terms of the need and benefits of planning services in an integrated way.