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Care & Treatment

  • Emergency Medicine

Emergency Medicine

NOTICE: Due to an increased demand in emergency services, wait times may be longer than usual. We appreciate your patience. Learn about getting the right care at the right place.

Routine COVID-19 testing for people without COVID symptoms is NOT available in our Emergency Department. If you need a COVID-19 test, please visit a COVID-19 testing site or use an at-home test.

Review our Emergency Department Visitor Policy.

During a medical emergency, getting treatment at Mount Auburn Hospital could save your life. At our Harvard-affiliated facility, you receive care from doctors who are board-certified or eligible for board certification in emergency medicine—meaning they know the latest research on the best ways to treat you. And you benefit from the experience of one of the country’s first hospitals to have a dedicated emergency department staff.

Trust all of our compassionate, fully trained professionals to help preserve your health.

When Do I Need Emergency Services?

Call 911 if you or a loved one experiences symptoms or conditions such as:

  • Back, head or neck injury
  • Broken bones
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Intense, sudden pain
  • Major burns
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Severe allergic reactions
  • Traumatic injury
  • Unconsciousness
  • Uncontrollable bleeding
  • Very high or low body temperature

Care for Minor Conditions

For care of minor illnesses and injuries, visit Mount Auburn Hospital’s Walk-In Center—a quicker and more affordable alternative to the emergency department for adults and teenagers.

Award-Winning Stroke Care

You can trust the quality of our response to stroke because:

  • All patients who came to Mount Auburn Hospital’s emergency department with stroke symptoms in 2014 received brain scan results within 45 minutes of arriving. That’s better than the Massachusetts average (75 percent) and national average (65 percent).
  • We earned the following American Stroke Association/American Heart Association awards in 2015:
  • Get with the Guidelines-Stroke Gold Plus—the highest possible recognition—which means we met high safety and quality standards for two years in a row
  • Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite Plus—the best possible recognition—which means we provided treatment quickly four quarters in a row

Excellent Heart Care

During a heart attack or another cardiovascular emergency, you’ll feel reassured knowing Mount Auburn Hospital offers every treatment you need. We can:

  • Perform heart catheterization, a minimally invasive procedure, at any time of day or night
  • Conduct advanced surgery on your blood vessels

What Happens in the Emergency Department?

When you arrive in our emergency department, a triage nurse will:

  • Ask about your symptoms and medical history
  • Take your vital signs
  • Arrange lab tests or advanced imaging procedures, if necessary

As soon as possible, you’ll then go to an exam room for further evaluation. If you need continual monitoring and treatment, you’ll go immediately to critical care.

If you come to the emergency department with a minor condition, you may be seen in our sub-acute area, where you’ll get faster service from physician’s assistant (PA) who can diagnose your condition, order additional tests if necessary, and help keep you comfortable.

Transfers to Other Hospitals

If you come to our emergency department with a traumatic injury or a child under 15 who needs hospital admission, we’ll stabilize your or your loved one’s condition. Then, we’ll transfer you or your child to a facility that provides specialized treatment.

Accessing the Emergency Department on foot after 8 pm

This video demonstrates how to access the Mount Auburn Hospital Emergency Department after 8 pm.

Needham Entrance

Seconds Count

During a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.

In an Emergency Call 911

If you are undergoing a potential medical emergency including any of the following symptoms:

  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Signs of a stroke
  • Severe abdominal pain
  • Multiple injuries
  • Bleeding that will not stop
  • Coughing blood
  • Vomiting
  • Bleeding from the rectum
  • Severe burns
  • Pregnancy-related emergency

Call 911 immediately or go to your nearest Emergency Department.

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