When to attend the Emergency Department

Please come to the emergency department if you have a life threatening condition like:

  • severe breathlesness
  • chest pain
  • severe blood loss
  • symptoms of stroke
  • collapse

More information about our Emergency Department


When to seek alternative services

We often see patients presenting at the Emergency Department who could receive treatment elsewhere, such as a Minor Injury Unit, pharmacy or GP practice. Common presentations of such conditions which can be treated elsewhere, are:

  • Problems or conditions that have been rumbling on for a while and not got suddenly worse – please visit your GP first
  • back pain
  • abdominal symptoms going on for a few weeks such as constipation
  • rashes which are not new
  • repeat medications or “run out”
  • for a review of a condition already known about
  • coughs and colds
  • insect bites and stings
  • sunburn
  • earache
  • sprains and strains
  • toothache
  • minor nose bleed which has now stopped
  • hayfever
  • Eye conditions. Please contact the Minor Eye Care Service and do not attend the Emergency Department first, if you have:
    • Red eye or eyelids with no reduced vision
    • Dry, or gritty, or itchy and uncomfortable eyes including ingrowing eyelashes
    • Mild eye pain (on a scale of 15): 1-3 getting better with pain killers
    • Irritation and inflammation of the eye
    • Superficial foreign body in the eye
    • Significant recent sticky discharge from the eye or watery eye
    • Recent flashes or floaters for less than 3 months with no loss of vision and / or no obstruction across vision
    • Recent loss or distortion of vision for more than 48 hours and less than three months with no pain



Why it's important to use the Emergency Department properly


Stay Well

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