Emergency Department


The Te Whatu Ora Whanganui - Whanganui Hospital’s Emergency Department provides 24-hour care for the assessment and treatment of serious illness or injury requiring urgent attention.

There are around 22,000 emergency department attendances at Whanganui Hospital every year.

Whanganui Hospital’s emergency team is committed to providing patients with the best possible personalised care available in a small hospital, with all the benefits of having state-of-the-art technology at its disposal.

Please remember, emergency departments are for emergencies.



On arrival at the hospital, patients are assessed by a triage nurse before being directed to the appropriate service.

If your condition is serious, you will be seen in our Emergency Department, according to priority. This process allows the most unwell and most urgent patients to be cared for first.

If you have a minor injury or illness, you will be seen by a primary care doctor in the Whanganui Accident and Medical Clinic (WAM).

Patients with minor injury or illness may wait longer for treatment. Some patients may find it more convenient to see their GP, or after-hours duty doctor, if their injury or illness is not urgent.

If uncertain of the seriousness of their condition, patients can seek advise by calling their GP, or Healthline (0800 611 116).

Once assessed and treated, patients may be admitted to a ward, transferred to another hospital or discharged. If discharged, patients should check the following before leaving:


  • Do I know what is wrong with me?
  • Will I be able to manage at home?
  • If I have a prescription, where can I collect my medication?
  • When must I take the first dose of my medication?
  • Do I know how to care for my illness or injury at home?
  • Do I have transport home?
  • Do I need any follow-up care?
  • Is my pain under control?
  • Do I have a copy of my discharge summary covering the above points and, if appropriate, my ACC form?


Patients are advised to contact their GP, or return to the Emergency Department, if their condition worsens or fails to improve satisfactorily once home.