What to expect?
Each patient will undergo a brief assessment, called triage, by a Registered Nurse which determines which patient needs to be seen first. If your condition is very serious, you will be seen by the doctor right away. The sickest patients are treated first.
Once you are triaged, you will be sent to the appropriate zone within the department. These are dedicated patient care ‘zones’ with specialized health care teams for critically ill patients, children, heart patients, people with mental health issues, and those with non‐life threatening illnesses. This helps to speed up the assessment, diagnosis and treatment process for everyone.
After triage, you will be registered. We will ask you for your health card and will confirm your personal information. We need this information to start your medical record.
How long do I have to wait?
We know waiting can be frustrating. Your wait depends on how sick you are and how many other people are being treating at the time of your visit. If we are treating many critically ill or injured patients, you may have to wait longer. Wait times vary and we ask for your patience and understanding. We will do our best to see you as quickly as possible.
The amount of time you spend in the ED will depend on:
- the number of tests you may need (for example, blood work, ECG, urine sample, x-rays or a CT scan,)
- whether your emergency doctor has requested a consultation with another specialist,
- whether you are being admitted to the hospital and need to wait for an available bed.
If your condition changes at any time after the triage process, please call for the nurse immediately.
We try to minimize your wait and keep you informed.
What can I expect in the treatment area?
There are different treatment areas to care for different conditions. We will send you to an area where a nurse will give you care specific to your condition.
- Will ask you questions that are more detailed about your illness or injury.
- Will complete an assessment of your condition.
- May start some tests or treatments.
- May ask you to change into a hospital gown, if needed.
- Provide you with discharge instructions.
- Will examine you.
- May order tests such as X-rays, ultrasounds and blood tests.
- Will review the test results and discuss a treatment plan with you.
- May refer you for follow up with your doctor or a clinic.