When to come to the Emergency Department

Emergency Department entrance at PCH
Emergency Department entrance to PCH
December 4, 2020

We are currently experiencing a very high number of Emergency Department patient presentations.

You might experience long waiting times if you visit the PCH Emergency Department for a non-life-threatening emergencies. 

When a child arrives at the PCH Emergency Department, a triage nurse makes a quick assessment of the urgency of your child's condition. This process makes sure that the sickest kids are seen first and that means that some people who arrive after you, may be seen before you.

When should you bring your child to an Emergency Department?

If your child has an urgent medical condition such as an accident or an injury (such as a burn, broken bone or injury to the head) or is very unwell, you can bring them to the Emergency Department (ED) at PCH or your nearest hospital emergency department. You can check the wait times for metropolitan Emergency Departments here.


What are your other options?

Given the high demand for our Emergency Department at the moment, there are other options you can consider.

Visit an Urgent Care Clinic

Not all urgencies are emergencies. When you have an urgent illness or injury, visit gpurgentcare.com.au to find a clinic close to home and book an appointment.

See your child's GP or an after hours GP

Call and make an appointment to see your child's GP, or an after hours GP.

Call the HealthDirect advice line

You can call the free HealthDirect advice line on 1800 022 222, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day for advice from a qualified health professional.

Call the CAMHS Emergency Telehealth advice line for mental health issues 

The CAMHS Emergency Telehealth Service (CAMHS ETS) provides phone and online videocall support for children and young people who are experiencing a mental health crisis, as well as support and advice to families and carers.