Yale Health

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an “emergency”?

Care for an emergency medical condition is covered at facilities worldwide. If you have an emergency medical condition, go to the nearest medical facility for treatment.

An emergency medical condition is a sudden and severe condition, sickness or injury, including, but not limited to, severe pain, which would lead a prudent layperson including the parent or guardian of a minor child or the parent or guardian of a disabled individual possessing an average knowledge of medicine and health, to believe that failure to get immediate medical care could result in:

  • Placing one’s health in serious jeopardy;
  • Serious impairment to a bodily function(s);
  • Serious dysfunction to a body part(s) or organ(s); or
  • In the case of a pregnant woman, serious jeopardy to the health of the unborn child.

What is an acute medical problem?

Acute medical problems are illnesses or injuries that require prompt care but will not generally cause loss of life or severe impairment if left untreated for a brief time.

What should I do if I have an emergency?

If you have a medical emergency, call 911. When possible, call Acute Care at 203-432-0123 before going to the hospital emergency department.  When you call and let us know you are going to the Emergency Department, a nurse can follow up on your care and make sure that your primary care clinician knows as well. If you are unable to call before you go, be sure to call the Referrals Department at 203-432-7397 within 48 hours of receiving care.

What do I do if I have a need to see someone today but it is not an “acute" problem?

For advice about medical problems which are not acute during regular business hours and days, please contact Internal Medicine for adults 203-432-0038, Pediatrics for children at 203-432-0206, or Student Health for students and student dependents 203-432-0312. The nurse will give you home care advice or get you an appointment with your primary care team.

During evenings and weekends, please call Acute Care at 203-432-0123.