acute physicianA post in some hospitals in the UK for a doctor who takes all calls from GPs and A&E staff regarding unscheduled medical admissions. The hours of duty are approximately 8.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. He or she may give advice on the phone and refer the patient to a specialist clinic or to one of the acute clinics.
All patients who come to hospital are seen first by the acute physician who then makes a decision about management and writes this plan in the notes. These patients may be seen in A&E, in the Acute Physician Unit (APU) or medical assessment unit (MAU), depending on the acute physician’s assessment based on the history from the referring doctor. Patients coming to the APU will have basic observations, ECG, saturation, etc., done routinely by APU nurses.