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A&E Reception
When you arrive please report to reception. All adult patients who arrive independently to the department are registered by the reception team.  Patients are either assessed by an assessment nurse or streamed to the injury unit or our primary urgent care centre depending on their illness or complaint.  An assessment nurse will take a brief history and check your blood pressure, heart rate and temperature if required. This ensures patients are seen in the most appropriate place and helps to reduce waiting times. It is important that you inform nursing staff of any difficulties you may be experiencing or if you require assistance. Your details including your symptoms will be recorded. You will be directed to one of the following areas.

Primary Urgent Care Centre
PUCC
This is just to the right of the reception desk above and is like a GP's surgery catering for minor issues such as sore throats, coughs, colds, urine infections and a variety of other conditions seen in children and adults.  If you would normally go to your GP but are experiencing difficulty in obtaining an appointment or registering, then you will most probably be seen in this area and by a GP or a Nurse Practitioner.

Read about our NON Clinical Navigators; they will be able to assist you ensuring you are not waiting in the wrong queue.

The Observational Medicine Unit (OMU)
This is a separate area within A&E where you may be admitted if you need ongoing treatment or investigations before discharge or sometimes admission to the hospital wards. All patients are admitted on a care pathway appropriate to their diagnosis or presenting complaint. You will have a dedicated nurse and doctor caring for you and will be reviewed by an A&E consultant during your stay.

You will be made comfortable in one of 8 beds or a recliner chair. Snacks and meals are available if you stay over a mealtime and you are able to have a wash or shower. Your family is able to visit with you during the day and at the discretion of the nurse in charge during the night-time to allow for all patients to get the rest they need. Most patients usually stay for a maximum of 24 hours in the OMU.

The OMU also provides care for Ambulatory Care patients. These are patients who are well enough to be at home following their presentation to A&E but may need to re-attend one or more times for follow-up appointments over a numbers of days. At your appointment you may have investigations, treatment or simply a review by a consultant before being discharged from the hospital.

The Children's Emergency Assessment Area
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where they will be assessed by registered children’s nurses. This is a secure area and has restricted access for safety. No hot fluids are allowed there. The picture above links to their page.

Minor injuries
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Twisted ankles, cuts, bruises and injuries of any nature that are non-life threatening will be directed to the minor injuries area, where they will be treated by emergency nurse practitioners or doctor. From the waiting area you will go down this corridor to the Minors area.

More information

Non clinical navigators 

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Navigators will help you access primary care services and register with a GP if it is necessary.

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The GP out of hours service provides cover for the GP service outside working hours. Advice will be offered over the phone by a GP who will be available to see patients when it is necessary. Please call 0208 185 0545 rather than going to A&E. If the patient is too unwell to travel, they can be visited at their home by a GP.

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