Emergency Department

Call 000 in an emergency

The Emergency Department looks after people in an emergency.

An emergency is when an illness or an injury is serious and requires urgent treatment.

When you arrive at the Emergency Department, you will be seen by a triage nurse who will decide how urgent your situation is.

The order you will be seen will depend on how serious your emergency is.

The people who have the most urgent conditions will always be seen first.

It will not depend on the time you arrive in the Emergency Department. People with less serious conditions will have to wait until the doctor is free.

Sydney and Sydney Eye Hospital Emergency Department is open 24 hours per day, including public holidays.  

We provide 24 hour emergency service for adults (age 16 and over). The Sydney and Sydney Eye Hospital Emergency Department specialises in hand and eye emergencies.

If you are under 16 years of age, please attend the Sydney Children's Hospital Emergency Department (Located at Randwick and Westmead).

If your need is not urgent, please make an appointment with your local doctor or after hours medical centre.

Please click these links If you need a referral to the Eye Outpatient Department or the Hand clinic.


Hospital Address Phone number
St Vincent's Hospital Victoria Ave, Darlinghurst  8382 1111
Prince of Wales Hospital Barker St, Randwick  9382 8400
Sydney Children's Hospital High St, Randwick  9382 1111




If you need to come to the Emergency Department please bring:

  • Any referral letters you may have (for example, from your doctor, optometrist, ophthalmologist or physiotherapist)
  • A list of all the medicines you are currently taking. If you do not have a list simply bring your medicines with you
  • Bring your glasses (If you are coming with an eye condition)
  • Bring your eyedrops (if you have any)
  • Private health insurance card or DVA card if you have one
  • The name and phone number of your usual doctor or medical centre
  • Your Medicare card or passport (if you are not an Australian citizen)


When you arrive you will be seen by a triage nurse who will decide how urgent your emergency is.


Treatment in the Emergency Department is based on clinical need and not:

  • The time of your arrival
  • Financial situation
  • If you have health insurance

Patients requiring urgent attention will always be seen first.

If your illness or injury is not urgent you will have to wait to see a doctor.

If your condition gets worse you should tell the Triage Nurse immediately.

You can seek care for non-urgent illness or injury through your local doctor or an After Hours Medical Centre.

Eating or drinking

  • Do not eat or drink while waiting to see a doctor
  • Please ask the staff before you eat or drink while you are waiting to be seen

You may need tests or procedures that require you not to eat or drink beforehand

Pain relief

If you are in pain tell the Triage Nurse who may be able to offer some pain relief.


Please let us know if you need an interpreter. We will organise a telephone interpreter for you.

There are no set visiting times. But we limit the number of visitors to two people at any one time.

A doctor or nurse will let you know when you can go home.

Before you leave you should make sure that you:

  • Understand what medications you need to take
  • How to take your medications
  • Know when to see a doctor again
  • Ask for a medical certificate
  • Ask for a referral letter for your doctor

When you go home you need to:

  • Tell your doctor that you have been to the Emergency Department
  • Give the letters from Emergency Department to your doctor

We are a teaching hospital. Student doctors or nurses may be involved in your care. They will be supervised by senior staff during your visit.

You have the right to say no to having a student involved.

If you do so, this will not impact in any way on the treatment we will provide.

To view the commonly asked questions for the Emergency Department, click here.