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Acute care

Acute NHS Trusts provide services such as accident and emergency departments, inpatient and outpatient medicine and surgery and in some cases very specialist medical care. They provide secondary care, ranging from relatively small district hospitals to large city teaching hospitals.

The word acute, in health terms, generally refers to physical illnesses and conditions (usually short-term) which require diagnostic tests, treatment and follow-up care. (There is longer-term care provision but most inpatient stays are of short duration.)