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The Emergency Department at the Civic and General campuses of The Ottawa Hospital is open 24/7.
* There is no emergency department at the Riverside Campus.

The Ottawa Hospital has two full Emergency Departments, located at the Civic and General Campuses. The Emergency Departments at the Civic and General Campuses are designed to care for patients suffering from serious medical problems who are unable to wait to be seen by their family physician.

Specially trained doctors and nurses work as a team to provide the best possible care. Each of the Emergency Departments sees approximately 210-230 patients per day and both are very busy. Both Departments are open 24 hours a day


When you arrive at the Emergency Department, you will be greeted by one of our triage nurses. The nurses are skilled in triage, which is a system used to make sure the sickest patients are taken care of right away. The nurse will assess your condition as quickly as possible by talking to you about the reasons that you came for emergency care, your allergies and the medication that you take. If necessary, the nurse will check your temperature, pulse and blood pressure and provide immediate care. Once you have seen the triage nurse, you may be taken immediately into the department, or asked to register and wait in the waiting room. This triage system allows patients to be seen according to the severity of their illness.

The Emergency Department Team

An Emergency doctor is responsible for the department and is on duty at all times. There will also be other doctors called residents. Residents have their medical degrees and can practice while they continue their training under supervision. Medical students supervised by other doctors may also be involved with your care. The nurses and doctors are assisted by other health care workers such as orderlies or patient care assistants, clerks, respiratory therapists, ECG technologists, pharmacists, social workers, volunteers and chaplains.

Our Leaders:

  • Dr. Guy Hebert – Chief of Emergency Medicine
  • Dr. Eric Clark – Deputy Manager, Clinical Activities
  • Dr. Edmund Kwok – Deputy Manager, Quality, Safety & Performance
  • Dr. Jennifer Leppard – Assistant Manager, Staff Support and Patient Experience

Areas in the Emergency Department

Both Emergency Departments have separate entrances for the arrival of ambulances; these patients are also triaged so care can be provided for the sickest patients first.

Both Emergency Departments also have separate areas for the most seriously ill patients. There is another area for people who are less seriously ill, and are able to walk or move with little or no assistance.

Why is there a Waiting Time in the Emergency Department?

The team works to provide quality care as quickly as possible. The most seriously ill patients are seen first even though they may come into the department after other patients. This is why the triage nurse checks everyone as soon as possible after they arrive.

We appreciate your patience if you are required to wait. While waiting, if you have questions or you feel your condition has become worse, please let the triage nurse know right away.

Important Things to Bring

  1. Your health card number.
  2. A list of the medications that you take. If you have an accurate and up-to-date list, this will be sufficient. If you do not have time to make a list, please bring the bottles.
  3. Any records you may have concerning your health.

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Last updated on: September 7th, 2023