Services available at: Lister Hospital
The emergency department at the Lister Hospital – also known as accident and emergency or A&E – assesses and treats people with serious illnesses and injuries who need emergency treatment. The department is open 24 hours a day every day and serves our communities in east and north Hertfordshire and south Bedfordshire.
What happens in the department
If you walk into the department, you will be booked in by one of our receptionists and a senior nurse will then triage (assess) you based on the information you have given us. This will help our team to decide how urgent your condition is and make sure you are then seen by the relevant people. You will be fully assessed, including having blood tests, x-rays or scans where appropriate to help diagnose your condition and agree what treatment you need. Depending on your diagnosis, we may be able to treat you and let you go home without needing to transfer you to another department. Otherwise, we may admit you to an inpatient bed so that your treatment and care can continue.
Waiting times in the department
The emergency department is usually very busy. We aim to see and treat everyone in a timely manner and we see people in order of clinical need. Our team will prioritise the order that people are seen in, depending on how unwell they are or the nature of their injury. This means that someone who arrives after you may be seen and treated more quickly.
If you have a minor illness or injury, we recommend that you go to our urgent treatment centre at the New QEII Hospital in Welwyn Garden City. This centre is open every day from 8am to 10pm and can treat a range of minor illnesses and injuries. Visit the urgent treatment centre page for more information.
Finding the department
The emergency department is in the red zone on the ground floor of the Lister Hospital. The main entrance is from gate 3, opposite the main bus stops for the hospital. The department is clearly signposted from the main car park and main entrance.
Before you come – other alternatives for non-life threatening illnesses and injuries
- Self-care – you may be able to treat minor illnesses or injuries such as sprains, strains, insect stings and cuts and grazes yourself
- Local pharmacy – pharmacists can help give advice for treating common illnesses and the best medicines to use, as well as advising on medicines you have been prescribed or are already taking
- Visiting your GP – for general medical advice, examinations or an illness or injury that requires a prescription
Not sure if it’s an emergency or what care you need?
If you or your child have an injury or illness and you are not sure what care or service you need, call NHS 111 for free at any time. For a suspected heart attack, stroke or any other serious or life-threatening illness or injury in an adult or child, always call 999 immediately.