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How to contact NHS 111 if you’re deaf or have hearing loss

If you need urgent medical care, but it’s not an emergency, you can get help on NHS 111 online or by calling NHS 111.

If you have hearing loss and cannot hear on the phone

You can call NHS 111 using the confidential relay service Relay UK

Relay UK can help people who cannot hear on the phone or have difficulties with their speech by providing a text-to-speech and speech-to-text translation service.

To make a text relay call you can download the free Relay UK app onto your smartphone, tablet or computer and link it to your phone number. You can then contact NHS 111 through the Relay UK app by dialling 18001 111. 

You can also dial 18001 111 on a textphone.

What to expect

When making a call with Relay UK you’ll be automatically connected to a confidential Relay UK assistant.

You can either type what you want to say and the Relay UK Assistant will relay what you said to the NHS 111 operator, or you can speak to the operator directly. The Relay UK Assistant will then type the NHS 111 operator’s response for you to read on your smartphone, tablet or computer.

Find out more about how to use the service on the Relay UK website.

If you use British Sign Language (BSL)

Use the NHS 111 BSL service available in your country:

You can also use the Relay UK service.

If it’s an emergency

If it’s a life-threatening emergency, call 999. 

How to call 999 through a Relay Assistant

Dial 18000 instead of the normal 18001 through the Relay UK app or from a textphone.

Find out more about calling 999 through Relay UK.

How to call 999 in BSL 

You can call 999 and speak to a call handler through an interpreter through a Video Relay Service.  

Find out more about calling 999 via BSL999 and download the app.

How to send an emergency SMS to 999

Text the word ‘register’ to 999. You’ll need to register again if you change your phone number.

Find out more about emergency SMS and how to use it on the Relay UK website.

Page last updated: 26 January 2024

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