Medical mythbusters – the Emergency Department

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Q: What is ED for?

ED is designed to care for people who have new physical and mental health problems that are serious. These are problems that without emergency care would be life altering or life threatening. Examples include head injuries, new chest pain, diabetic emergencies, and a baby or child with a rash and a temperature.

The minor injuries area is available to treat less severe injuries like broken bones and wounds.

Q: What isn’t ED for? Why?

ED is not an alternative to visiting your GP as they are best placed to deal with ongoing non-emergency problems.

It isn’t for people that have ongoing problems that may need referral to other specialists in the hospital, as ED doctors cannot refer people with non-emergency problems to other specialists.

Common illnesses such as coughs, colds, viruses and stomach bugs are best dealt with at home with over the counter medication, plenty of fluids and rest.

Q: Why do I have to wait to be seen in ED?

Patients are seen according to how serious their problem is and when they arrived. All patients, except those who need immediate resuscitation, are seen initially by a senior nurse who will ask what their problem is, give painkillers if necessary, and organise x-rays and other tests if they are required.

This could mean someone who comes into the department after you is seen before you. Also the more people who come to ED, the busier it is, and the longer everyone has to wait to be seen.

Dr Liam Kevern, consultant and ED lead clinician

Choose well – find the right service for you
Posted in News, Uncategorized.

Last updated: March 27, 2019