Services at Palmerston Regional Hospital

Palmerston Regional Hospital’s services include:

Emergency Care

Palmerston Regional Hospital provides emergency care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Staff have specialist training in emergency medicine. The service has the capacity to provide high-level resuscitation care, including diagnosis and treatment.

The hospital has an Extended Emergency Medicine Unit (EEMU) co-located with the Emergency Department that provides care for emergency patients who require a prolonged stay, but do not require admission into the hospital or transfer to Royal Darwin Hospital. This is generally no less than four hours stay and no greater than 24 hours.

Patients requiring longer treatment may be moved to the medical ward for general care or transferred to Royal Darwin Hospital. This decision is made based on the clinical needs of the patient.

When a patient presents at Palmerston Regional Hospital emergency department, they will be treated and managed in accordance with their clinical needs. However, if a patient is critically ill or has a life-threatening condition they will be stabilised and transferred to Royal Darwin Hospital.

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Rehabilitation services

Palmerston Regional Hospital has a purpose-built ground floor rehabilitation facility including a dedicated therapy space and a gym and a hydrotherapy pool due to open in 2019.

The rehabilitation inpatient ward full capacity is 24 beds.

The rehabilitation service assists patients over the age of 14 years to regain or improve their function due to injury or disease and to help improve their quality of life. This includes assessment, triage, treatment, inpatient and outpatient services for conditions such as:

  • acquired brain injury
  • spinal cord injury
  • stroke and neurological conditions
  • vascular conditions and amputation
  • post-surgical and medical deconditioning
  • major burns
  • deconditioning.

Multi-trauma or orthopaedics injuries at Palmerston Regional Hospital’s rehabilitation service are provided by a multidisciplinary team of rehabilitation medical specialists, nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech pathologists, psychologists, dieticians and social workers.

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Geriatric Evaluation and Management (GEM)

Palmerston’s GEM service aims to improve the quality of life and functionality of geriatric patients who have been affected by serious illness. It provides short term inpatient rehabilitation care by a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses and allied health staff.

Services consist of specialist consultation and assessment, inpatient and ambulatory (outpatient) services including a dedicated constant care team and community outreach support services. Patients are referred to GEM by their local doctor.

The inpatient service operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Nurses are always on site with medical, allied health and support staff available during standard business hours. The GEM ward has the capacity of 24 inpatient beds.

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Medical wards

Palmerston Regional Hospital has capacity for up to 24 general medical inpatient placements. Generally, this will be patients who have a less complex medical condition.

For more critical care the patient will be transferred to Royal Darwin Hospital.

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Day surgery

Palmerston Regional Hospital provides planned day and extended stay surgery where patients can stay in hospital after surgery for up to 72 hours. Services include pre-admission clinics, consultation diagnosis, treatment, pain management and post-surgery care.

Where patients need more complex surgical procedures, these will be undertaken at the Royal Darwin Hospital. Some examples of planned day surgical procedures at Palmerston Regional Hospital include endoscopies, ophthalmology, dental, urology, ear, nose and throat and gynaecology.

Depending upon a patient’s surgical need, the Top End Health Service will schedule surgery at either Palmerston Regional Hospital or Royal Darwin Hospital. There are 24 surgical inpatient beds.

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Maternity services

Palmerston Regional Hospital maternity services are part of the Top End Health Service’s integrated maternity service.

Palmerston Regional Hospital provides pregnancy check-ups, monitoring, education and advice to expectant mothers and follow up care post birth, mother and baby monitoring and breastfeeding advice.

Birthing services are provided by the Royal Darwin Hospital.

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Ambulatory care

A range of outpatient services will be available at Palmerston Regional Hospital as directed by your clinician, and when fully operational will include:

  • antenatal
  • diabetes/endocrinology
  • endoscopy
  • antenatal
  • Geriatric Evaluation Management (GEM)
  • general medicine
  • general surgery
  • gynaecology
  • haematology
  • infectious diseases/viral hepatitis
  • paediatrics
  • palliative care
  • postnatal
  • rehabilitation
  • respiratory - including pulmonary lung function testing
  • rheumatology
  • other speciality services

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Paediatric services

In patient paediatric care remains at Royal Darwin Hospital.

Palmerston Regional Hospital emergency department will assess and provide emergency care for children, but where they require intensive, critical care or have ongoing needs they will be stabilised and transferred to Royal Darwin Hospital to be treated by paediatric specialists.

Most surgical procedures for children will continue to be conducted at Royal Darwin Hospital. Someday surgery sessions may be scheduled at Palmerston Regional Hospital for children.

Children who need overnight or longer-term care will also be transferred to Royal Darwin Hospital. A small number of beds are dedicated for children who are admitted with short term non-life-threatening conditions such as mild dehydration, mild gastroenteritis, cold symptoms and mild asthma.

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