No matter how busy our Emergency Department is, the most seriously ill and critically injured patients will always be seen immediately.

How busy is the Northern Hospital Emergency Department (ED) right now?

Upon arriving at the Emergency Department, you will be triaged and asked to wait until it is your turn to be seen by a doctor.
Those with the most urgent healthcare needs will always be seen first.

Unfortunately, there are times when we are particularly busy, and significant waiting times can occur. This may be the case if your condition has been triaged as less urgent. We are working hard to ensure all patients receive care as soon as possible. The picture below provides a real-time guide to how busy we are.

Extremely busy

Last updated: 17th July, 2024 02:12:00

Our status explained

NORMAL ACTIVITY Even during normal level of activity, our staff are often busy, and waiting times of around one hour are common.
VERY BUSY As we get busier, the number of people in the waiting room increases and the time you may need to wait for treatment gets longer. This can be anywhere between two to four hours.
EXTREMELY BUSY When we are extremely busy, the waiting room gets crowded and you may need to wait more than four hours to see the doctor.

Did you know Northern Health runs the Victorian Virtual Emergency Department?

If you have a non-life-threatening emergency, you can use the Victorian Virtual Emergency Department (VVED) to connect with our specially-trained emergency nurses and doctors via video call – from the comfort of your home. Click here to use the VVED. Using this service may save you a trip to the Emergency Department.

What to expect when you arrive at the Emergency Department

The most seriously ill and critically injured patients will always be seen first. This is regardless of when they arrived or how they arrived (by ambulance, walk-in or sent by another doctor). The Emergency Department is a very busy place with lots happening behind the scenes. Please click here to view the Northern Health Emergency Department page to assist you to best prepare for your visit.

For information relating to our Paediatric Emergency Department, including what to expect and what you need to bring with you to the ED, please click here.
Please click here for the latest information on visiting Northern Health, including relevant restrictions related to COVID-19.

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