Harmoni and Yorkshire ambulance service among the preferred bidders for the NHS non-emergency service
NHS Kingston and NHS Richmond have appointed a preferred bidder for their £1.5m contract to provide the call handling service for the NHS 111 pilot due to start later this year.
NHS 111 is a non-emergency telephone service, scheduled to be available throughout England by April 2013. The service is intended to make it easier for people to access local health services. According to Department of Health plans, patients calling the service will be assessed, given advice and directed to the most appropriate local service.
Commenting on the contract signed with Harmoni, Dr Phil Moore, interim chair, Kingston clinical commissioning group, said: “The 111 service will make it easier for people to get the right help when they need it by phoning a number that is easy to remember.
“We want to provide urgent care to meet the needs of people now and in the years to come, and Harmoni have a proven track record of delivering these services to a high standard.”
Harmoni currently has two contracts to deliver NHS 111 in London, in Croydon and Hillingdon.
In addition, NHS Calderdale has named the partnership of Yorkshire ambulance service NHS trust and Local Care Direct as the preferred provider for a pilot NHS 111 service for the region.
David Whiting, the chief executive of Yorkshire ambulance service NHS trust said: “Our partnership of an ambulance service and out-of-hours provider creates a firm and experienced foundation for safe, effective and integrated patient care.
“We are looking forward to implementing our plans for the services and, working together, we will deliver a high quality and responsive service for patients needing urgent care in Yorkshire and the Humber.”
Last week, NHS South East London, a partnership of primary care trusts in Bromley, Greenwich, Lambeth, Lewisham, Southwark and Bexley, announced that NHS Direct, Bromley Healthcare and Grabadoc are the preferred providers for its NHS 111 non-emergency health advice service.