Seventy thousand patients are treated each year
at the RD&E Emergency Department
Where to find us
The Emergency Department (or A&E) is based at our Wonford Hospital site. Details of how to get here and a map is available on our 'getting here pages'.
There are about 150 staff covering ED round the clock 365 days of the year.
Consultant cover is available in the Emergency Department Monday to Friday from 8am until 11pm and at weekends between 9am and 5pm.
Patients and visitors to ED will notice nursing and medical staff wearing different colour uniforms.
Photo right: Nursing staff in Minors using the Picture Archiving and Communications System which stores X-rays, scans and other medical images.
Patient records and journey through ED
From the minute a patient is booked in and their details taken on the computer, the journey of that patient is tracked and recorded from their symptoms to how long they are waiting and where they are referred to for treatment and discharge to a hospital ward or home.
This IT system is called Patient First and replaces the whiteboards and paper patient records of the past. Patient First has revolutionised how we work and is used across the hospital, for example, with the management of beds and to keep on-call staff briefed with up to date information.
NHS Emergency Departments must meet a four-hour target from patient admission to discharge. In some instances though this target may not be reached, for example, if the clinical circumstances means that patient should not be moved out of ED until their condition has stabilised.
By its very nature the majority of Emergency Department work is unpredictable. If the Emergency Department is exceptionally busy either with the sheer volume of patients coming in or a very poorly patient has been admitted and requires several members of the staff to look after them, then this may cause delays. In these circumstances a member of staff would endeavour to explain this to patients in the waiting area.
When a patient is not seen and discharged within four hours this is termed as a ‘breach.’ Every single breach is monitored and investigated daily to check whether any of the delays could have been avoided.