Acute Assessment Unit

Antrim Area Hospital has established a system to allow GPs to fast track their urgent hospital referrals meaning people can begin treatment a lot quicker and avoid unnecessary waits in the Emergency Department.

Previously, a patient presenting to their GP medical assessment would have been referred to the Emergency Department to be triaged and await admission to the appropriate ward. This meant that frail elderly people and those with long term conditions needing hospital treatment had to present to the Emergency Department which was not appropriate. Instead, the GP can now speak directly with medical staff at the Assessment Unit to receive specialist advice and, if appropriate, to arrange for a referral to the Unit where treatment can begin immediately. Once in the Assessment Unit patients are either treated and discharged or stabilised and referred to the appropriate ward.

The unit is available for general / acute medicine, nephrology, cardiology and diabetes. It is part of a wider programme of modernisation and reform being undertaken by the Northern Trust. A range of measures are being developed to better meet patient needs and provide appropriate alternatives to the Emergency Department.

Page last updated:03 April 2015