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Emergency Assessment Unit

Updated 12 October 2016

An assessment area for adult emergency patients which greatly improves the care given to such patients. Our Emergency Assessment Unit is part of the Emergency Department along with the Accident & Emergency department.

Our Emergency Assessment Unit plays an important role in the emergency admission of GP and speciality patients and then facilitates their safe discharge home or transfer to another department dependent on individual need.

There are open visiting hours on the Emergency Assessment Unit.

We provide this service at Colchester General Hospital.

For phone numbers, go to our Ward List.


The EAU consists of:

Medical Day Unit (MDU)

Operates daily from 08:00 until 22:30, providing rapid assessment to maximise same day emergency care and discharge, reducing need for overnight bed usage.

Short Stay Unit (SSU)

A 22-bedded area consisting of three six-bedded bays and four single side rooms (Bays A-C inclusive) that operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to maximise the discharge potential of the short stay cohort of patients.

Observation Unit (OU)

A 22-bedded area, consisting of one six-bedded bay, two five-bedded bays and six single side rooms that provide a "holding area" for patients admitted in the evening and overnight with an anticipated need for specialty review or an intended length of stay of over 48 hours.

High Observation Unit (HOBs)

Provides higher level care for the deteriorating medical patients.