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Visiting the Emergency Department

UHL Emergency Department Ambulances
UHL Emergency Department Ambulances

Emergency Departments are for Saving Lives 

If your situation isn't life threatening, please call 111 for assistance or click here to go to 111 online

Do you have an emergency or an urgent need?

If your illness or injury is not severe enough to need a 999 call, please visit NHS 111 online or call NHS 111 for advice BEFORE coming to our Emergency Department.

A range of minor illnesses and injuries can be treated in other services. NHS 111 will help direct you to the best place for your needs. In most instances this means you will be seen and treated faster and it helps us keep emergency services free for those who need them most.

Serious or life-threatening illness and injuries

The Emergency Department provides emergency care for people who show symptoms of serious and life-threatening injuries and illness, such as:

  • Chest pain
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Heart attacks
  • Strokes
  • Severe bleeding that cannot be stopped
  • Severe injuries
  • Severe allergic reactions
  • Severe burns or scald

Everyone is assessed and treated based on how urgently they need medical help. This means that people might not be seen in the order they arrived or based on how they got there. The priority is to take care of those with the most critical medical needs first.

What if I just turn up at the Emergency Department?

If you turn up at our Emergency Department and you don’t need to be there, we may direct you to a more appropriate service. We will decide this by checking how you are and what is safe for you. We have colleagues trained to do this.

Overnight (between 2am and 8am) we may also ask people with minor injuries and illnesses that can safely treated in urgent care services or which can wait for treatment at a pharmacy or doctor’s surgery the next morning, not to wait in the Emergency Department. This helps you to be seen faster in an appropriate service and allows us to focus on people needing emergency care, as well as preventing overcrowding in our waiting areas. 

Contacting the Emergency Department 

Having a loved one admitted to the Emergency Department can be a worrying and stressful time. If you have a loved one who has been admitted alone, either by ambulance or as a walk-in, we know that as their next of kin, you want to be kept informed.

Where possible, please make contact with your loved one to discuss their current situation. 

If this isn’t possible then please call 0300 303 1573 and ask to be put through to the Emergency Department. 

The team are working hard to care for patients but it isn’t always possible for them to answer the phone straight away. If you aren’t able to get a response from the Emergency Department, then please try and call after a short while.