In an emergency or life-threatening situation, always call 000
What we do
The Alfred Emergency & Trauma Centre, or 'Emergency' as it is known, operates 24 hours a day and is one of the main service providers to the people of Victoria, providing timely, quality care for the acutely unwell and injured.
The main function of the Emergency & Trauma Centre is to treat patients who are suffering from a serious illness or injury that could lead to severe complications if medical treatment is not received quickly.
We strive to ensure all patents receive timely, high-quality care which is consistent with their clinical needs. For patients in the Emergency & Trauma Centre this means prompt upfront assessment by the most senior doctor available, reducing the time spent waiting.
What to expect
Find out more about what to expect when you come to Emergency.
Commonly asked questions
Please do not eat or drink before being seen as you may need tests or procedures that require you not to eat or drink beforehand. Speak to the staff if you have any questions about this.
Families, friends and loved ones play an important role in a patient’s recovery.
To ensure your loved one receives the best possible care, emergency staff may at times limit the number of visitors permitted. This may include requesting visitors to wait in designated areas during procedures.
Depending on the circumstances, accessing time critical treatment in an emergency department is not always necessary. In these situations, visiting your local doctor or an after-hours medical centre means you are more likely to be treated by the same doctor each time and you are less likely to wait for extended periods.
The following telephone and web services are also available to provide you with support in a crisis or potentially dangerous situation.
Nurse on Call
Nurse on Call is a Victorian phone service providing immediate, expert advice from a registered nurse 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This service is best for the following situations:
- You or someone you care for is feeling unwell
- You are not sure if you should seek medical help
- You are physically a long way away from medical help
- You need advice about health services in your local area
Phone: 1300 60 60 24
Victorian Poisons Information Centre
In the case of a poisoning incident, the Victorian Poisons Information Centre can advise you what first aid is required, whether it is necessary to call an ambulance, to go to the doctor or whether nothing needs to be done. The service operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Phone: 131 126
Lifeline is a confidential crisis support service operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Anyone across Australia can contact Lifeline if they are experiencing a personal crisis, suicidal thoughts, or they know someone who is in such a position and needs advice to support them.
Phone: 13 11 14 (calls from mobiles free)
There are many additional resources which may be relevant to your needs.
Find out more about who to call in a crisis.
Special conditions apply for overseas visitors who present to Australian emergency departments and do not hold a valid Medicare Card.
Overseas visitors may need to obtain a letter of guarantee for payment from their travel insurer, or to pre-pay for their treatment and care. If an overseas visitor needs treatment from an Alfred Health emergency department, The Alfred Health Finance Liaison Team will determine what, if any, upfront payments are required. Payments may be reimbursed to the patient through their travel insurance provider if relevant insurances have been arranged by the patient.
Please note that all travel insurance providers differ and have strict pre-existing condition policies. We encourage you to review the insurance conditions closely prior to your travel.
The Australian Government has Reciprocal Health Care Agreements (RHCA) with a number of international governments. These agreements may entitle you to limited subsidised health services for medically necessary treatment whilst visiting Australia. Find out more at the Medicare RHCA website.
Please note, if you have recognised refugee status from the Australian Government you should advise our staff as early as possible as specific support is available.
If you have any questions or concerns about financing your treatment and care, please speak to any of our department staff.
If you have private health insurance, you may wish to be treated in a private hospital. Please discuss this option with the treating nurse or doctor. You also need to be aware of the expense that you may incur in being treated in a private hospital. Consult your private health fund for more information. If you elect to be transferred to a private hospital, an ambulance will be arranged but may be at your expense.
Due to the high demand for inpatient beds, there may be a wait in the Emergency Department until a suitable bed becomes available. Every effort will be made to place you in a quiet area to assist your recovery.
Understanding your care
You should understand:
- the likely diagnosis of your presenting problem
- the result of any investigations
- the benefits and risks of any management including medications and operations.
Under the circumstances, it is sometimes difficult to fully comprehend what is happening and you may not remember what you have been told. If so, please ask the nurse or doctor so that you feel at ease about your medical condition.
If you are admitted to the hospital, staff will discuss this with you. The doctor caring for you will decide where you are best treated and will organise your transfer if necessary. If you are transferred to another hospital, an ambulance will be provided.
Code of Behaviour
A code of behaviour exists to ensure a safe and friendly environment for patients, visitors and staff. No acts of violence, swearing, threats or verbal abuse towards another patient, relative or staff member are allowed. An initial warning is given, but if the behaviour carries on, the staff, security or the police will ask the person to leave.
The safety of our patients, visitors and staff is very important to us. Aggressive and abusive behaviour is unacceptable and appropriate action is taken to maintain safety for all.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Hospital Liaison Officers
The hospital has Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Hospital Liaison Officers (AHLO's) to work with Aboriginal patients, families, community members and staff.
How to access this service
No referral needed
You do not need a referral letter from your doctor to access this service.
What to bring
When you come to Emergency
- Any letters or correspondence from your GP, to assist in determining your health status and urgency category at the time of your arrival
- Medicare card
- Health Care and/or concession card (if you have one)
- Adverse drug alert card (if you have one)
- Medicines you need to take while you are here
- List of medicines you are currently taking (or the boxes), including medicines you have bought without a prescription, such as herbal supplements and vitamins
- Relevent x-ray films, scans, ultrasounds or any other test results or reports
- Private health insurance card (if you want to use it)
- Glasses, hearing aid, walking frame
For an overnight (or longer) stay
- Dressing gown and slippers, or comfortable day clothes and shoes
- Personal hygiene items, such as shampoo, shaving cream, shaver, toothpaste and deodorant
- Something to do, like a book, a magazine or an iPad/tablet with headphones
ResourcesAll patient resources
Emergency & Trauma Centre brochure
Lifeline provides all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to online, phone and face-to-face crisis support and suicide prevention services.
Victorian Poisons Information Centre
Advice and information for people regarding poisoning
Nurse on call
NURSE-ON-CALL puts you directly in touch with a registered nurse for caring, professional health advice around the clock
Better Health Channel
Alfred Health - Medicare Ineligible Patients