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  • Mount Elizabeth

Accident & Emergency

  • Overview

    Accident & Emergency

    Mount Elizabeth Orchard 24-Hour A&E Helpline: +65 6731 2218

    Mount Elizabeth Novena 24-Hour A&E Helpline: +65 6933 0100

    Mount Elizabeth Hospitals 24-Hour A&E Helpline:

     

    The accident and emergency department (A&E) at Mount Elizabeth Hospitals provides immediate medical attention to critical and life-threatening emergencies, as well as treatment to patients with urgent medical problems.

    The average wait time at our A&E is 30 minutes.

    Our medical specialists are well-trained to respond to emergencies efficiently and effectively, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. 

    Our multidisciplinary team provides quality and personalised care for conditions such as (but not limited to):

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    Abdominal pain

    Abdominal pain

    Abdominal pain is usually a result of a temporary stomach ache caused by trapped wind, indigestion, overeating, smoking, or a viral or bacterial infection. In women, they can also be due to menstrual cramps. For mild to moderate pain, an over-the-counter painkiller can be taken.

    More serious causes of abdominal pain, particularly if the pain is sudden and localised, include appendicitis, ulcers, gallstones or kidney stones. In women, it may also be caused by some gynaecological emergencies.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you experience sudden or severe pain
    • you can’t stop vomiting
    • there is blood in your vomit
    • you pass bloody or black stools
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    Cold and flu

    Cold and flu

    A cold can be caused by any of several viruses that attack the nose and throat, causing inflammation that leads to a blocked or runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes, sore throat and cough.

    If your symptoms include fever, headaches, body aches, tiredness, loss of appetite and nausea, you may have influenza or flu. This is caused by a different group of viruses and is more severe and contagious than a cold.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you have difficulty breathing or you feel short of breath
    • you have a fever of 38°C or higher
    • your GP refers you
    • you have a long-term medical condition such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease or kidney disease
    • you have unusual symptoms, such as weakness of arms and legs, joint pain and swelling, or rashes
    • you are 65 and over
    • you are pregnant
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    Cuts and bruises

    Cuts and bruises

    Cuts are wounds that break the skin surface, causing bleeding. Bruises form under the skin due to hard contact with an object or person. A bruise occurs when small blood vessels burst and form a reddish mark under the skin.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • the cut is deep and the bleeding won’t stop
    • you see exposed bone or tendon tissues
    • you suspect a foreign body is left in the wound
    • you develop an infection, ie. a fever, as well as swelling, pain, or pus in the wound
    • the cut is caused by an animal or rusty object
    • you have been hit on the head or ear
    • you feel dizzy, nauseous or faint
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    Fever

    Fever

    A fever may accompany infections, illnesses, or cases of overheating or dehydration.

    You have a fever when your body temperature is higher than 37.4°C. You may also experience headaches, loss of appetite, body aches, shivers, sweating or weakness and a hot, flushed face. Don’t rely on touch to assess a temperature. Use a thermometer.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you are struggling to breathe (especially in children)
    • you experience severe chest pain
    • you have a severe headache
    • you are feeling extremely faint and weak
    • you are coughing up blood
    • you have a seizure or you are shaking spasmodically
    • you have an unexplained rash
    • you are pregnant
    • your fever lasts more than 3 days
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    Headaches

    Headaches

    There are more than 150 different types of headache, so treating one can be more complicated than you would think. Headaches can be caused by stress, lack of sleep, hunger, flu, sinus problems, too much alcohol (leading to dehydration) or allergies.

    Symptoms could also be the after effects of a head injury, or indicate a more serious condition such as a stroke or brain tumour.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you are experiencing the most severe headache to date
    • you hit your head prior to the headache, and the headache is getting worse
    • you are slurring your speech
    • your limbs feel weak or numb
    • you have a stiff neck
    • you have a seizure
    • you have blurring or loss of vision
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    Hives

    Hives

    Hives are raised, itchy skin rashes. They come on suddenly and can be localised to one area of the body or spread over a larger area. They can last for a few hours or even months. To treat it, keep the skin cool, apply an ice pack to the affected areas and ensure that clothes are loose and light to avoid further irritation.

    Doctors often can’t identify the source of the outbreak, but common suspects include stress, infections, insect bites, changes in temperature or an allergic reaction to a substance or food.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you suspect it is due to an allergic reaction
    • your eyes, lips, tongue or throat swell up
    • you are finding it difficult to breathe or swallow
    • you experience stomach pain or diarrhoea
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    Insect bites and stings

    Insect bites and stings

    Insect bites and stings usually require no medical intervention as they typically only cause swollen, itchy, red marks on the skin that clear up after a few days.

    Gently scrape off any stinger. Do not try to squeeze it out as you may spread the venom. Wash the area with soap and water and pat dry. Apply an ice pack to minimise swelling. Do not scratch the areas as this may lead to infection. Instead, apply over-the-counter topical medication recommended by your pharmacist.

    Occasionally, some bites or stings can trigger more serious allergic reactions that require immediate medical attention.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you have been stung 3 or more times
    • you have been stung in the mouth or other parts of your body, and you feel itchiness on your mouth or face
    • your eyes, lips, tongue or throat feel swollen
    • you are struggling to breathe
    • you feel nauseous, are vomiting or have diarrhoea
    • your heart is beating very fast
    • you feel giddy, agitated or confused
    • your skin has gone very pale
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    Mild burns and scalds

    Mild burns and scalds

    Burns and scalds are injuries to the skin caused by heat. Scalds are caused by steam, liquids and chemicals while burns are caused by dry heat such as fire or hot metal. Burns are classified from first degree (least serious) to third degree (most serious). Third degree burns and any burns over a large skin area require immediate medical attention.

    For small first and second degree burns, remove any clothing or jewellery near the burnt area. If clothing is stuck to the wound, do NOT try to remove it. Pour cool water over the wound for at least 10 minutes. Do NOT use ice, iced water, butter or other greasy substances. Cover the burn loosely with a sterile gauze bandage or cling wrap, taking care not to touch the burn or burst any blisters. Ask your pharmacist to recommend over-the-counter painkillers.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your burn is bigger than your hand
    • you have been burnt in the nose, mouth, throat, eyes, ears or genital area
    • you have inhaled smoke
    • you are struggling to breathe
    • you have been burnt by chemicals, electricity or lightning
    • your skin is white, leathery or charred
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    Nausea and vomiting

    Nausea and vomiting

    Nausea is discomfort in the stomach that makes you feel like vomiting. Nausea can be a symptom of simply overeating or caused by common minor ailments such as viral infections, motion sickness, food allergies, or morning sickness in pregnancy. When feeling nauseous, sip small amounts of water or a sports drink and try to eat some light, bland food in small amounts. If you have vomited, avoid taking any food until you can hold it down.

    Nausea could also be a sign of intestinal blockage, concussion or head injuries, all of which require immediate medical attention.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you have a severe fever, stomach pains or headache
    • you are severely dehydrated, feel very thirsty, experience giddiness or have a dry mouth and have little or no urine for the past few hours
    • you are vomiting after a head injury
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    Nosebleed

    Nosebleed

    Nosebleeds happen when the tiny blood vessels in your nose burst. The bleeding can appear to be very light or very heavy, involve just one or both nostrils, and last from a few seconds to over 10 minutes. There are various causes of nosebleeds such as blowing your nose too hard, dry climates, irritation from foreign objects in the nose, being hit in the face, allergies, infections, or alcohol or drug use.

    If you have a nosebleed, sit down, lean forward and pinch your nose just above the nostrils. Breathe through your mouth and wait for the bleeding to stop. If your nose is injured, place an ice pack on the bridge of your nose.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your nosebleed is caused by an injury, such as being punched or hit by an object
    • your nosebleed won’t stop after 20 minutes
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    Strains and sprains

    Strains and sprains

    Strains and sprains are injuries to your muscles, tendons or ligaments, usually due to an accident while moving. Both can cause pain, swelling, bruising, soreness and restricted movement.

    A strain is the stretching or partial tearing of your muscles or tendons, commonly in the leg and back. A sprain is the stretching or partial tearing of the ligaments, most commonly in the knees, ankles and wrists.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your GP refers you
    • you are experiencing severe pain in the injured body part
    • there is deformity of the limb involved
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    Urinary tract infection (UTI)

    Urinary tract infection (UTI)

    A UTI is a very common bacterial infection that mainly affects women. Generally lasting between 24 and 48 hours, a UTI can cause abdominal pain, bloody urine and an urge to urinate more often than usual, as well as a burning sensation in the urinary passage.

    Drink plenty of water to flush out your system and avoid holding in urine when you feel a need to pass it out. Antibiotics may also help you to get better faster.

    It is possible for a UTI to infect your kidneys, which will require urgent medical attention.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you have a severe pain or tenderness in your back or side
    • you have a severe fever
    • you feel nauseous or are vomiting
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    Asthma

    Asthma

    Asthma is a common condition that causes wheezing, coughing, a tight chest and shortness of breath. Depending on the severity of the condition, these symptoms will affect the airways in different ways and can be triggered by a range of different things. Common triggers include pollens, moulds, air pollutants such as haze, pet allergies, dust mites, smoking and infections, including coughs and colds. Exercise may also trigger an attack.

    If you experience a suspected asthma attack, sit down, stay calm and try to take slow, steady breaths.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your symptoms are getting worse
    • you don’t have your inhaler with you or you have not been prescribed one
    • you don’t feel better after using your inhaler
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    Acute gout

    Acute gout

    Gout is a form of arthritis caused by a build-up of uric acid in the blood. Uric acid is formed naturally in the body, but consuming too much red meat, organ meat, seafood and alcoholic beverages (particularly, beer) can result in an excess.

    Gout causes painful swelling that affects mobility. It normally occurs in the big toe, but may also affect the ankles, heels, knees and other joints in the body. Anti-inflammatory painkillers can help to ease the pain of an acute gout attack. To prevent reoccurrence, eat plenty of vegetables and poultry, drink lots of water, and minimise the consumption of alcohol, red meat and seafood.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if your GP refers you. 

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    Dengue fever

    Dengue fever

    Dengue fever is a viral infection that is commonly transmitted by mosquito bites. It may be diagnosed if you have recently been bitten by a mosquito and experience a headache, body and joint pain, rash, stomach pain, or fever that lasts more than 2 days.

    Take plenty of time to rest and drink lots of fluids. Over-the-counter pain relievers may also help, but avoid taking aspirin as it can make the condition worse.

    Rare complications require urgent medical attention. These are more common in people with conditions that compromise their immune systems, or who have had dengue fever.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your GP refers you
    • you are feeling extremely faint and weak
    • you develop bleeding (including menstruation)
    • you feel worse in the 24 hours after the fever goes down
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    Vertigo

    Vertigo

    Vertigo makes you feel like your surroundings are spinning around you. This may be accompanied by nausea, vomiting or a ringing in the ears. It can be linked to several conditions, but one of the most common is labyrinthitis, which is caused by a swelling of the nerves in the ear that are vital for balance.

    If you are diagnosed with an infection, specific medications can help to relieve your symptoms. More rarely, vertigo is a sign of a serious neurological condition such as a stroke.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you are very distressed by the vertigo
    • you find difficulty maintaining balance or walking
    • you are finding it difficult to speak or swallow
    • your face is drooping
    • your arms and legs feel numb or weak
    • you have recently sustained a neck injury
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    Choking

    Choking

    If the airway is fully blocked, immediate medical intervention is required. A prolonged lack of air may cause permanent damage to the brain.

    If you see a person choking, you should attempt to help the person dislodge the choke. If you are alone, call an ambulance and attempt to free the blockage by:

    • placing a fist above the person’s navel
    • grasping your fist with your other hand and bending over a hard surface, such as a table or chair
    • thrusting your fist inwards and upwards

    If the patient is obese or pregnant, place your fist in the centre of the chest and thrust your fist inwards and backwards. If the patient turns unconscious, place the patient on the floor, call an ambulance and begin compressions on their chest until help arrives.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if the food goes down the ‘right pipe’ but gets stuck, and you can’t remove it.

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    Minor trauma

    Minor trauma

    An accident or fall can lead to a minor injury to your knee, back, ankle, shoulder or other joints. Symptoms of a torn tendon or ligament may include swelling, pain, numbness, bruising, stiffness, tenderness and a clicking or popping sound when you move the affected joint.

    Ignoring a minor injury for too long increases your risk of developing a long-term condition or chronic pain. You need an accurate diagnosis to avoid as much long-lasting damage as possible. If an injury of an upper limb, lower limb, or back does not seem to be healing, you should see an orthopaedic surgeon for an assessment.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you are in a lot of pain and can’t put weight on the injured (lower) limb
    • you can’t move the joint or muscle
    • the limb or joint looks out of shape/deformed
    • the injury is numb, discoloured or cold
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    Allergies

    Allergies

    Your body has an allergic reaction when it is exposed to an allergen and perceived it as harmful. People are triggered by different allergens, so what triggers you might not trigger someone else. Common allergens include food, such as nuts, eggs, shellfish and dairy products, as well as certain medications and dust.

    Depending on the severity of your allergy, you may experience an itchy rash, itchy or watery eyes, nasal congestion, hives, vomiting or stomach pain. Over-the-counter antihistamines can alleviate many of the symptoms of mild allergic reactions.

    If you suspect someone is having a severe allergic reaction, call an ambulance immediately. Ask if they carry an EpiPen and, if they do, inject it into their thigh. Lie them down and turn them on their side if they vomit or cough up blood. Perform CPR if they stop breathing.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • you are struggling to breathe or swallow
    • your eyes, lips, tongue or throat feel swollen, or your throat is tight
    • you can’t stop coughing
    • your pulse is weak
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    Chest pain

    Chest pain

    Chest pain can be caused by several conditions, some mild and some severe. Heart-related chest pain usually occurs in the central part of the chest, above or involving the stomach. It may feel like a squeezing or strangling sensation that radiates down the neck, jaw and arms, and occasionally your back. This may be accompanied by giddiness, tiredness, shoulder pain, nausea or vomiting.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your pain is severe or intense, and lasts for longer than 15 minutes
    • the pain worsens when you walk or exert strength
    • you feel dizzy, out of breath or overly sweaty
    • you are struggling to breathe
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    Stroke

    Stroke

    A stroke cuts off the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain, which can result in permanent brain damage or death. It requires immediate medical attention.

    You are more at risk of a stroke if you have high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease, and if you smoke or consume excessive alcohol. Reduce your risk by maintaining a healthy blood pressure, quitting smoking and exercising regularly.

    Visit our 24-hour walk-in clinic if:

    • your pain is severe or intense, and lasts for longer than 15 minutes
    • the pain worsens when you walk or exert strength
    • you feel dizzy, out of breath or overly sweaty
    • you are struggling to breathe

     

    Admissions

    Our 24-hour clinic has a panel of medical specialists on call. Please notify the admissions counter if you wish to be attended by a preferred specialist based in our hospital.

    Bills & Insurance

    You may have a personal accident plan, comprehensive hospitalisation plan or travel insurance that covers your expenses for your visits to a 24-hour clinic (or A&E). If so, read the tips below to ensure a seamless claiming process:

    1. If you have an international or corporate plan, speak to your insurance provider ahead of time to check if direct billing is possible.

    2. Retain all records and receipts to support your claim.

    3. Check if your insurance provider’s claim form needs to be completed by a doctor before you are discharged from the hospital.

    In case of a medical emergency, and you are admitted to a hospital after a visit to our 24-hour clinic, please contact our admissions counter or call +65 6812 3776 to check if your insurance coverage is eligible for direct billing or the cashless service.

    Waiting Time

    The average waiting time to see a doctor at our 24-hour A&E clinic is about 30 minutes. This is approximate and for informational purposes only.

    The waiting time depends on several factors including the severity of a patient’s medical condition and the number of patients at the A&E. It is our priority to provide care to the most critical cases first.

    Assessment of a patient's condition is done at the triage stage. Patients showing emergency signs will be prioritised before non-urgent cases that do not require immediate medical attention.