At SGH, patients have access to over 600 doctors from over 30 clinical specialties. Our dedicated team of healthcare professionals is committed to give each patient the quality of care that would best address the clinical problem. This section will help to familiarise you with our Emergency Department.
Registration and Triage
As an Emergency Department, our priority is to attend to patients with serious illnesses and injuries.
To facilitate this, we will assess your medical condition at Triage after you have registered at our Registration Counter, and sometimes, even before registration if the situation so demands. The Emergency Department at SGH is one of the busiest in the country. There is a Senior Emergency Physician on duty on every shift.
At the Triage Room, our staff will:-
- take a short history of your illness.
- record your vital signs like temperature, pulse, respiration and blood pressure.
Please assist the staff by giving them all the relevant and accurate information. You will be assigned a specific priority level according to the severity of your medical condition. Our staff will advise you of the appropriate area to go to for consultation and treatment. There are separate waiting areas for patients with different priority levels.
Our staff will also inform you of the estimated waiting time. We would like to assure you that all efforts will be made to see you promptly.
There are four different levels of priority and they are as follows:-
Priority 1 - Resuscitation & Critically-ill Patients
Patients in a state of cardiovascular or imminent collapse are attended to immediately at the Resuscitation Area.
The doctors will speak to the family member after they have assessed and stabilised the patient.
Examples: Heart attack, severe injuries, severe bleeding, shock and severe asthma attack.
Priority 2 - Major Emergencies (Non-Ambulant)
Patients with acute medical conditions that must be initially treated in the Hospital. They are in stable condition and do not require resuscitation. They are require to be trolley-based for patient examination and treatment. These patients are attended to early at the Critical Care Area.
The doctors will speak to the family member after they have initially assessed the patient.
Examples: Major limb fracture / dislocation, moderate injuries, severe abdominal pain and other severe medical illnesses.
Priority 3 - Minor Emergencies (Ambulant)
Patients with acute symptoms who are in a stable condition and are able to walk. These patients may be treated by General Practitioners (GP) / Family Physicians with acute care resources or at the Emergency Department. After Triage, they are seen at the Emergency Ambulatory Care Area.
Family members may enter the consultation room with the patient, but they may be asked to take a seat in the waiting area when examinations and procedures are being performed.
Examples: Sprains, minor injuries, minor abdominal pain, vomiting, fever, rashes and mild headaches.
Priority 4 - Non-Emergency
An old injury or a condition that has been present for a long time. These patients should preferably be attended to by General Practitioners (GP) / Family Physicians. The Emergency Department is not the appropriate facility for their care. You may wish to go to your own General Practitioner or to a polyclinic.
Examples: Chronic joint pains, chronic skin rash, long-term nasal discharge, old scars, cataracts, removal of tattoos and sore throats.
More examples of non-emergency cases can be found on Health Promotion Board website.
Patients With Fever
Patients with fever will be managed in a separate area in the Emergency Department. This is to reduce the risk of infection to the other patients in the Emergency Department.
The waiting time refers to the period from the time you present in the department until your consultation with the doctor. The waiting time may depend on various factors. However, if your condition has been assessed to be serious at Triage, you will be attended to earlier.
Consultation and Treatment
Depending on your medical condition, our doctors may decide on the following for you:-
- Review by doctors from other departments - When your medical condition requires a review by doctors from other departments of SGH, we will call the respective doctors to attend to you.
- Observation after initial treatment / investigations - After initial treatment and investigations, we may observe you in the Emergency Observation Ward for a number of hours. Following review, a decision can then be made as to whether your condition requires in-hospital admission or outpatient care.
- Admission - When there is a need for further investigations and treatment in an inpatient setting, we will admit you as an inpatient.
- Discharge for home - After treatment, you may be discharged with or without medication. The doctor may also refer you to our Specialist Outpatient Clinic, your nearest polyclinic or your own family physician.
If the doctor refers you to our Specialist Outpatient Clinic, our staff will give you an outpatient appointment letter with the date and time of your appointment.
Collection of Medication
If your doctor has prescribed medication for you to take home, you may collect your medication at the Pharmacy.
The current charges for Emergency Department can be found here. Our A&E service & facility fee covers basic investigations and services provided. Specialised emergency investigations and services will involve extra cost and hence additional charges. You may pay by cash, NETS, personal cheque or credit card. If your doctor decides to admit you, the fees will be included in your total hospital bill.
Our staff at the Admissions Counter will assist you with the admission and help you decide on your room type, by giving you the estimated cost of hospitalisation and the deposit required.
Children below 12 years old
In SGH, we do not have the facilities to treat young patients. Our paediatricians are stationed at KKH . Usually before sending young patients over, we will stabilize their condition first.