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04
Jul

NHS Direct: 111 contracts ‘unsustainable’


NHS Direct has said it will be unable to provide its new non-emergency 111 helpline inNorth Essex and Cornwall because the contract terms were "financially unsustainable", the Express reports.

NHS Direct has said it will be unable to provide its new non-emergency 111 helpline inNorth Essex and Cornwall because the contract terms were "financially unsustainable", the Express reports.

In a letter to health executives in the regions, officials said: "NHS Direct has no option but to exit from the contract. The reason for this is that since thelaunch of NHS Direct's other 111 services, we have established that the contract terms which NHS Direct had entered into are in fact, financially unsustainable."

The NHS 111 line has replaced NHS Direct as the service for urgent but non-emergency care, has been plagued by problems since throughout its planning stages and launch, with complaints of calls going unanswered or diverted incorrectly.

Expressreports that an investigation was also launched into the 111 services after a number of potentially serious incidents, including three deaths, were linked to the service. Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the service was running "fairly well" in most of the country but admitted it could be improved and was under review.

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