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When to use NHS 111 online or call 111

Use NHS 111 online ( or call 111 if you think you need medical help right now.

We can direct you to the best place to get help if you cannot contact your GP during the day, or when your GP is closed (out-of-hours). 

Depending on what you need, you might be advised to:

  • call 999 or go to A&E in an emergency
  • go to an urgent treatment centre
  • see an evening and weekend GP (out-of-hours GP)
  • get a callback from a nurse
  • contact an emergency dentist or find a dentist
  • contact your own GP surgery
  • see a pharmacist for a minor illness or to get medicine
  • look after yourself safely at home

Get help online 

111 online is for people aged 5 and over. Call 111 if you need help for a child under 5.

Answer questions about your symptoms on the website and we will tell you what to do next.

Find out how 111 online works in detail.

Emergency prescriptions

You can get an emergency supply of regularly prescribed medicine from 111 online.

Dental problems

111 online can help with dental problems. This might mean finding a dentist, or an emergency dentist if there is availability in your area.

What 111 online cannot do

111 online cannot:

  • issue fit notes – you need to contact your GP
  • make or cancel appointments for you in other parts of the NHS

111 online asks for feedback, but this is only used to help improve our service.

We are unable to respond to requests for medical help left as feedback.

Get help on the phone

The 111 phone service can help with the same problems as 111 online.

Find out what happens when you call 111.


Call 111 if you need help for a child under 5.

Other ways to contact 111

Text relay

Call 18001 111 using text relay, 24 hours a day.

British sign language (BSL)


Help in other languages

Call 111 and ask for an interpreter.

How to get urgent medical help elsewhere in the UK

How to make a complaint

To make a formal complaint about NHS 111, follow the NHS complaints procedure.

Page last reviewed: 14 November 2022
Next review due: 14 November 2025