Coming to our Emergency Department (ED)
If possible please bring with you:
- Your Medicare card and your private health insurance details
- Any other health care cards
- A list of your current medications
- Any x-rays,ultrasounds or scans that may be related to your condition
Please remain fasted if you have experienced an injury or have abdominal pain in case you need to have a procedure or intervention on arrival.
If you are experiencing severe pain it is safe to try your own pain medication prior to presenting to the ED.
When you arrive
Please go straight to the triage counter that has a red sign “come here first” where you will be greeted by a Registered Nurse. You will be “triaged” (categorised) by a qualified nurse who assesses the urgency of your condition. The nurse will ask your name, date of birth and a few questions about your concerns as well as complete a quick physical assessment. You will then be asked to go to the administration counter and update your details such as address, phone number, health care status and next of kin.
Patients are treated in order of priority (Triage Category); this ensures the sickest patients are seen first.
It is important to let the triage nurse know any of the following information:
- If you are pregnant or breastfeeding
- Recent overseas travel
- If your pain or symptoms become worse
- If you have any allergies
- If you have chest pain or a heart condition
- If your condition worsens while you are waiting, please alert the Triage Nurse
What happens next?
At the Mackay Base Hospital
You will be allocated to see a clinician in either the Fast Track Clinic or the main ED depending on your presenting problem. Once you are inside the ED, you will undergo a thorough assessment by a team of nursing and medical staff.
Tests and procedures will be carried out when necessary. This may occur while you are in the waiting room or later once inside the ED.
The team will review your test results and provide emergency treatment and will then decide to either:
- Allow you to return home with a referral if necessary for further care such as, a follow-up appointment with your local doctor or an outpatient appointment
- Monitor your condition for a few hours before making a decision
- Admit you to the hospital for further care
Sometimes patients must wait for test results or for a ward bed to become available. This may cause unavoidable delays in the ED. Our staff will continue to care for you until you are able to go to a ward or be discharged home.
At all other hospitals
In the rural Emergency Departments nursing staff will assess you and contact the Medical Officer on call if you present after hours and on weekends.
You may need to be referred or transferred to another hospital for ongoing treatment or further assessment such as CT scans.
Our Emergency Departments are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week