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AMU

What we do

The Acute Medical Unit provides a high quality rapid assessment service for patients with acute medical and surgical problems.

You will either be referred to the unit by your GP or via the A&E department.

You will receive an assessment and possible investigations but you will not necessarily be admitted to hospital.

What to expect while under our care

On your arrival to the unit you will be allocated a nurse and a health care assistant who will begin the assessment process. You will have your blood pressure, heart rate and temperature recorded. Blood tests, an electrocardiograph (ECG) and blood sugar test will also be taken if appropriate.

You will then be assessed by a doctor who will organise any further investigations if necessary. These may include X-rays and scans.

You will be kept informed of the investigations that are being ordered for you; it may not be possible to do them all on the day you arrive.

You may need to stay in the unit overnight, in which case your family and friends may bring you a bag with toiletries and night clothes which can be stored in individual bedside lockers.

Your family may visit between the hours of 1pm and 7pm. Visiting outside these hours may be possible at the discretion of the nurse in charge so please ask.

Once you have had an initial assessment a senior doctor will review your results and decide whether you need to be admitted to hospital. If you are admitted, you will be transferred to an appropriate ward as soon as one is available and your care handed over to the staff on the ward.

Conditions treated

AMU accepts patients who have presented directly to A&E and are deemed medically unwell enough to warrant admission or who have presented to A&E as medically expected following a prior telephone call between the patient’s GP and the acute medical consultant.

AMU also offers a number of other services on a Monday to Friday basis:

  • Daily AMU Review Clinic (Monday to Thursday, 11am onwards)
  • Weekly Rapid Access Infectious Diseases Clinic (Wednesday 2pm – 4.30pm)
  • Weekly slots for Ascitic (Tuesday) and pleural (Thursday) procedures which include:
    • Long-term pleural drains
    • Pleural aspiration (diagnostic or therapeutic)
    • Pleural biopsy
    • Long-term ascitic drains
    • Short-term ascitic drains
  • Temporal artery biopsies – are performed at request by Dr Barden, although it should be understood that this is a ‘procedure only’ service and all future management of the patient will be the responsibility of the referrer.

Contact

01273 696955 extn. 4608

The Acute Medical Team on‑call can be directly contacted by GPs via Professional Support Line on 0300 1303045.

Patient information

acute medical unit (AMU)

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chest drain insertion

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diagnostic pleural aspiration

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long term chest pleural drain

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pleural biopsy

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pleurodesis

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theraputic pleural aspiration

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