Exploring 811 use in Nova Scotia


In Nova Scotia, dialing 8-1-1 (or 7-1-1 for TTY) connects callers to non-emergency health information and services. Callers receive medical advice and reliable health information from Registered Nurses, 24 hours a day, all year round. 811 provides services in over 125 languages. 

About the study

On behalf of the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness (DHW), the MSSU is conducting a research study around the use of the 811 telephone service and online resources. The study aims to identify reasons why the public does and does not use 811 services, and whether things like age or gender may be related to different reasons for using or not using the service. This information can provide insights into opportunities to increase public awareness and use of this service. This study has been approved by the Nova Scotia Health Authority Research Ethics Board (NSHA REB, ROMEO File # 1024874).


The research team has developed a short survey to further understand the reasons why people do and do not use 811. The confidential survey is open to residents of Nova Scotia who are 16 years of age or older, and can be completed online or through an interview (either in-person or over the phone). 

The survey asks about use of the 811 tele-triage service and website, and also asks some questions that help us to understand more about the person responding. The survey takes approximately 20 minutes from start to finish, with the option to save progress and submit later. After completing the survey, there is an option to be entered into a draw for $100 grocery store gift card.

Our research team is engaging with a number of community organizations to encourage individuals from all over Nova Scotia to complete this survey. We are also working with the Immigration Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS), who can conduct interviews in other languages. 

The study results will be made available on this page within 3 months of study completion, and returned directly to any survey respondents who provided their email for this purpose.

Take the survey online

If you prefer to take the survey in-person or over the phone, please email Elizabeth Jeffers (Elizabeth.Jeffers@nshealth.ca) to set up a time to speak with a member of our research team.

Project Lead

Amy Grant, PhD
Senior Health Policy Researcher


Elizabeth Jeffers, MSc
Research Project Manager