Welcome to the National Pandemic Flu BSL Service

This service is NOT YET LIVE.

Click on the ‘Connect’ button to connect to a BSL interpreter.

This service is provided for Public Health England by InterpreterNow

User Guide

Using your computer and webcam, you make a video call to a BSL interpreter. The interpreter telephones a National Pandemic Flu Service (NPFS) adviser and relays your conversation with them.

This service will assess the patient’s symptoms, and if required, provide an authorisation number, which can be used to collect antivirals from a local collection point.

If you are the patient then it is your symptoms that will be assessed.  If you are contacting the service on behalf of another person it is their symptoms that need to be assessed.

You will need a pen and paper to write down some information.

You will need to know the following information about the patient.

  • Their name and date of birth,
  • Their current symptoms,
  • Their history of any serious medical conditions, and
  • Their home address including postcode

If you do not have all of these, please go and get them before calling.


When you call NPFS their call centre agent will collect all the details you provide.  They will also collect the answers you provide to each of the questions. This will help them guide you to the most appropriate outcome. The BSL interpreter does not collect or keep any information about you.

You may or may not be issued with an authorisation number.

If you are issued with an authorisation number you will be asked to go to your nearest collection point to pick up an antiviral drug for you to take to alleviate your symptoms.

If you have contacted the service on behalf of someone else, you can still attend the local collection point with identification for yourself AND the patient. You can use a passport, driving licence, bank credit card or utility bill.

For other forms of identification that will be accepted at the collection point please go to www.nationalpandemicfluservice.nhs.uk You will find the list under ‘‘collecting your antivirals’’.



You need a modern computer with a webcam and a good broadband internet connection. It is best if no one else is using your internet connection while you are on the call, especially not for online games, streaming music or watching films.

If your video call fails while you are connected to the interpreter, try again. You may need to restart your computer.


NPFS will only take details from you that will support your assessment and ongoing advice.  Information you provide may be used by the Department of Health and its partner organisation, Public Health England to:

  • treat the patient for Flu, to control pandemic flu and to help prevent future pandemics
  • contact you for feedback on how to improve the quality of the service
  • monitor the spread of the disease to ensure we have the right amount of antiviral treatments in the right place during a pandemic
  • For Scottish patients we will send a record of this contact to NHS 24

On this webpage there is more information about how your data may be used and your rights.

You will not be able to have an assessment using this service unless your details can be provided. However, if you do not wish for information about you to be shared we will give you the opportunity to say so.


We use relevant information about you to help improve NPFS services and the health of the public. Your information may be used to:

  • Help staff review the care and advice they provide to ensure it is of the highest standard e.g. call reviews are undertaken by clinicians / call centre operatives within our commissioned organisations to ensure clinical standards and quality are maintained.
  • Teach and train staff
  • Protect the health of the public
  • Provide statistics, performance and planning information
  • Find out how many people have a particular illness or disease
  • Carry out health research and development
  • Investigate complaints, legal claims or untoward incidents

Wherever possible the information will be anonymised. Sometimes the law allows the NHS to share your personal health information without your permission, for example, to investigate a serious crime or to protect a child.


All NHS organisations have a legal duty of confidence to their patients and the Data Protection Act 1998 further defines how we can collect and handle personal information.

All NHS organisations are required to appoint a Caldicott Guardian to ensure patient information is handled in accordance with legal and NHS regulations.



The Data Protection Act 1998 allows you to find out what information about you is held by NPFS. This is known as the “right of subject access”.

If you want to make a subject access request for personal data held in respect of any services provided by NPFS you should make a written request to:

NPFS Subject Access Requests
Vaccines and Countermeasures Response
Public Health England
5th Floor, North Wing
Wellington House
133-155 Waterloo Road