Emergency departments (A&E)
We provide 24-hour emergency departments (A&Es) at both Epsom and St Helier hospitals. Both emergency departments are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We also have dedicated children’s A&E on at both hospitals, where children under the age of 16 are seen.
Our emergency departments treat patients who have suffered a serious injury or accident, or who have developed a sudden serious illness or medical condition. Patients with minor injuries or illnesses may be treated in the minors area of the department by emergency nurse practitioners.
Patients may arrive on foot or be brought in by ambulance.
All emergency surgery is undertaken at St Helier Hospital. Patients arriving at the A&E department at Epsom Hospital who require emergency surgery will be transferred to St Helier for assessment and treatment.
When you arrive at A&E, you will be assessed to determine the most appropriate treatment. There are times when it may be more appropriate for you to be seen by a healthcare professional who does not work in the emergency department, such as your GP or practice nurse.
Both hospital sites have dedicated clinical assessment units, which we call acute medical units (AMU). Patients may be admitted to AMU directly from their GP practice or from the emergency department in order to be assessed by the medical or surgical team.
Urgent treatment centres at Epsom and St Helier hospitals
Our urgent treatment centres (UTCs), which form part of the emergency departments, provide care for patients who do not need emergency, life-saving treatment.
The centres offer appropriate treatment for people with minor illnesses or injuries, who come to the emergency department but who do not require the specialist skills of life saving doctors.
Patients with conditions such as broken bones, deep cuts requiring stitches and some illnesses or symptoms that need urgent treatment, such as skin infections or abscesses, are treated by specially trained nurses and GPs. The centre is open 24 hours a day.
This not only means they get the most appropriate treatment, it also means consultants in the Emergency Department can focus on people with critical or life-threatening conditions.
Please note that it is not possible for you to pre-book an appointment at the Urgent Treatment Centre, and it is not the same as a 'walk-in centre', which are designated GP-led services in the community.
There is a separate children's area within the main A&E department, staffed by children's nurses, which is open during the day. At night, children are seen and treated in the main A&E department.
All children brought in are seen by an A&E doctor first, and, if necessary, referred to a paediatrician and admitted to the paediatric unit. For emergency surgery and trauma, they are sent to Queen Mary's Hospital for Children at the St Helier site.
St Helier Hospital
The dedicated children's A&E department, next to the main A&E, is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is staffed by children's nurses. All children brought in are seen by a paediatrician.
If emergency surgery, hospital admission, or further tests or x-rays are required, they are sent to Queen Mary's Hospital for Children, on the St Helier site.
If elective (non-emergency) surgery is required, they are sent to Epsom Hospital.
Emergency Eye Unit at St Helier Hospital (eye casualties)
Opening hours and locations
Both our A&E departments are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
St Helier: the A&E department is located at the front of the hospital, to the right of the main hospital entrance.
Epsom: the A&E department is located beside Denbies Wing.
Carole Ann Johnson
Clinical lead, Urgent Care, St Helier
Dr Annali Lawrenson
Clinical lead, Epsom
Head of Nursing
If you would like to know more about your symptoms or condition following your visit to the Emergency Department, there is health information written in clear and easy to understand language available at patient.co.uk (opens in a new window).