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There has been a significant increase in calls to South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust’s (SCAS) NHS 111 service over the last two weeks, particularly from parents worried about their children’s symptoms who are unsure if these indicate a cold, flu or coronavirus.

As a result, SCAS has developed an at-a-glance symptoms checker that highlights the most common symptoms of coronavirus, along with those of the common cold and flu that also start to become prevalent at this time of year.

Claire Ward-Jackson, Infection Prevention and Control Lead at SCAS, said:

“The symptoms checker uses information from Public Health England, the World Health Organisation and the Centre for Disease Control, to give individuals a valuable and trusted reference guide as a ‘first check’ if they’re unsure whether their children’s or their own symptoms indicate a common cold, influenza or Covid-19.”

Patients can also check their symptoms online at find out when and where to get help and can even be contacted by a nurse if needed.

Luci Stephens, Director of Clinical Co-ordination Centres at SCAS, added:

“With the significant increase in coronavirus cases over the last two weeks, NHS 111 services across the country are incredibly busy again – just as they were at the start of the pandemic earlier this year. We know that at peak times such as we are now experiencing, some patients can have trouble getting through to speak to one of our team on the phone, so we hope this symptoms checker will be downloaded by people across our region so they can refer to it quickly when they need to if they are unsure about the symptoms of anyone in their household.”

The symptoms checker is available via the SCAS website at