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Emergency Department (ED)

Please only come to ED if it's for serious, life-threatening conditions that need immediate medical attention.

You should come to ED if you are experiencing: persistent, severe chest pain, loss of consciousness, confused state, severe blood loss, serious burns, or suspected stroke.


Should you come to the Emergency Department?

Our Emergency Department (ED) is one of the busiest in England compared to the size of our hospital. We see more than 100,000 patients each year. We will always prioritise seriously ill patients. This means that at busy times patients with non life-threatening conditions may have a long wait for treatment.

If you are not sure whether you need to come to ED, call NHS 111 or visit NHS Choices and use their symptoms checker.   


Alternatives to ED

There is a walk in Minor Injuries Unit at Herts and Essex Hospital in Bishop's Stortford, open from 9am to 4pm.

Your GP (including your GP out of hours service) can provide the best advice for the management of ongoing conditions and injuries, that do not require urgent care.

You can also go to your local pharmacy for advice about common health problems such as bugs and viruses, minor injuries, coughs and colds, aches and pains, skin conditions and upset stomach. They can supply you with emergency contraception.


More information

A list of local pharmacies can be found on the West Essex CCG website by entering your postcode.

If you do not have a GP you can find a list of surgeries accepting new patients on NHS Choices.

Advice about choosing the right service is available from  NHS 111.

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