How can you find out your NHS number?
Your NHS number should be on your medical card or on any letters concerning appointments from your GP, hospital, or any other medical practitioner.
Alternatively you can request this information from NHS Direct on 0845 4647 and NHS Direct online.
What are the advantages of the NHS number?
- It links together all the episodes of care you have received.
- It ensures that doctors, nurses and other carers access the right patient records.
- It improves patient confidentiality – those in the NHS who don't need to know your name and address can identify your records using the number.
- It supports joined-up healthcare across the various services available to you. Thus, your hospital and your GP are sure that they are exchanging information about the same patient.
- It improves accuracy of information used to manage the service.
What problems might arise from not having an NHS number?
Your doctor or nurse might look at the wrong records and your care may be confused with another patient.
This could lead to:
- Inappropriate investigation or treatment could be given
- Inappropriate health advice could be given
- Appropriate investigation or treatment could be withheld
- Appropriate health advice could be withheld
Make sure you can clearly identify your NHS number on ALL letters from your GP, hospital or any other medical practitioner.
Whenever you come into hospital for an appointment, always confirm with the receptionist that the following details are correct: NHS Number, first name, last name, date of birth and postcode.