Frailty Direct Assessment Unit (DAU), Causeway Hospital

What is the Direct Assessment Unit?

The Frailty Direct Assessment Unit at Causeway Hospital provides specialist assessment and treatment for those over the age of 65.

The Unit is a Consultant led service bringing together staff from across various healthcare professions to ensure that you get the best possible care.  As such, you may be seen by staff from across a range of specialties such as: physiotherapy, occupational therapy, social work, pharmacy, dietetics, speech and language therapy, nursing and medicine.

As a patient you will remain in the unit for assessment, which may take some hours. If you need to be admitted for ongoing care, you will be transferred to an appropriate ward.

Opening hours

The Direct Assessment Unit is open from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday to Friday.

Contacting the Unit

The Unit can be contacted via the main Hospital switchboard: 028 703 46187, Extension 37 5187.

Car Parking

There is car parking around the hospital site. All parking is pay and display. Please observe restrictions for ambulances. Limited disabled parking spaces are available; these are marked with the appropriate icon.

When you arrive

When you arrive, you should use the main, front entrance doors to the Hospital.  This is same entrance you would use if attending an outpatient clinic.  As you enter there is a reception desk to your right.  Please give the Receptionist your name and advise that you have an appointment scheduled with the Frailty Direct Assessment Unit.  The Receptionist will contact the Unit and a member of our Nursing Team will meet you in the Reception area and escort you to the Unit, located on the first floor.

Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, we ask that you are unaccompanied when we take you up to the Unit.  We are trying to reduce the number of people walking through the Hospital.  Your relative is welcome and encouraged to leave their contact details with the nurse who meets you in reception, so that we can keep them updated (with patient permission) on your progress whilst in the Unit.  You will be asked to complete a COVID questionnaire, temperature check, and confirm your details.

While patients are in the Frailty Direct Assessment Unit,  relatives can wait in the Reception area but as this is a day appointment and may take some hours, it is recommended that you leave and return when contacted by staff to do so.  Space and seating within the Reception area is limited.  Unfortunately at present the Coffee area and Restaurant are currently catering for staff only.

The Team

The Frailty Direct Assessment Unit Team will aim to keep you informed of your plan of care at all times.  Please let staff know if you have any questions.

When you arrive into the Unit, you will be booked on to the system and details will be checked.  The nurse will ask you questions relevant to your presenting complaint and begin your assessment.

As part of your DAU assessment you may have routine tests, such as:

  • Height, weight and BMI
  • Temperature/ Pulse/ Respiratory rate/ Blood Pressure
  • Urine test/ samples
  • Blood tests
  • ECG (Electrocardiogram – looks at your heart rate and rhythm)
  • X-ray or scans

After these you will have a medical assessment and treatment may be commenced if appropriate.

As part of your overall care you will be seen by other members of our multidisciplinary team.  Your assessment and treatment will be tailored to your individual needs.

You may require investigations as part of your care. At times, results for these can take a number of hours to complete. If you are prescribed new medication, this may be dispensed by our pharmacy team in DAU before you leave, or commenced by your own GP.

If you need further treatment you may be admitted to a ward or offered an appointment to return to the Unit.  The time taken for patients to be admitted to a ward can vary according to the demands on the hospital.

Virtual tour of the Unit

We are aiming to provide a guided, virtual tour of the Frailty Direct Assessment Unit – we will make this available on our website as soon as possible.


We greatly appreciate feedback on our service. Before leaving the Unit, you will be invited to complete a questionnaire on your experience.  You can also provide feedback by emailing our Service User Feedback Department at  Alternatively, you can share your feedback at:

Feedback from some of our patients

“New experience as a patient – can’t believe service exists for older people – Thank you.”

“Staff were amazing – first class care.”

“I couldn’t say anything other than first Class Care, second to none.”

“Excellent service by a very dedicated staff – Thank you so much. Everything was excellent.”

“Everyone was so helpful and friendly and had time to listen and explain things to me.  I came home relieved and heartened! I wasn’t an old codger after all!!”

“The DAU team helped me to see my situation in a more positive light and that there was help available.  Particularly good was that they all took time to listen and I felt I could talk to them and say how I felt, the care was excellent.”

“Was there anything that could have been improved? – No, A BIG NO, not at all.  They have all been very, very lovely.”

“This DAU is an excellent initiative and should be supported.  Particularly good about the care was the professionalism of the staff involved.”

“All staff were very attentive and caring.  They listened to our concerns and all were addressed – the service worked like clockwork.”

“Thorough assessment, staff all very welcoming and friendly, good atmosphere on the unit – Felt I was treated as an individual.”

“All the staff very good and caring, all been lovely.”

“The friendliness of the staff made it a good experience – Excellent all round.”


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