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Acute Medical Unit

Nurses in emergency care

The AMU (formerly called the Clinical Decision Unit ‑ CDU) is an emergency assessment unit providing assessment of patients requiring immediate investigations and treatment. The AMU has 34 beds, with 30 assessment beds and 4 beds in the Higher Monitoring Unit (HMU).

Your assessment

The assessment process will take 4-6 hours, and you will be seen by a number of health care professionals. Tests appropriate to your presenting complaint (the main medical condition for which you were admitted to the Unit) will be undertaken, and the results given to you when available.

It may not always be possible to fully assess you within this time, and if this is the case, we apologise. Please be patient. There will always be a nurse on the Unit who can tell you what is happening and help with any problems.

We strive to provide single sex accommodation, but due to the way the assessment area functions and the type of work that we do, this is not always possible. However, we will ensure that all patients are examined and treated with due regard to privacy and dignity. If you have concerns about being in a mixed sex area, please tell one of the staff. We will do what we can to address your concerns.

Patients awaiting assessment should not eat or drink anything unless they have checked with a member of staff first. Light refreshments will be available.


Please do not take any medicine you have brought from home without checking with a member of staff that it is safe to do so.

Transfer to wards

After your assessment, you will be admitted to a ward for further treatment or to be monitored, or you will be sent home into the care of your GP, if necessary.

If the doctor has decided to admit you, you will be transferred to a ward for your ongoing care needs to be met. This will happen as soon as a bed is available.

Your doctors may recommend that you remain in AMU as a short stay patient. If this is the case you will be reviewed daily by the consultant on call and discharged home as soon as you are medically fit.

How to get here

AMU is in the Centre Block. Park in the multi-storey car park in Craven Road. Join the Main Entrance Block at level 2. Turn right past reception, passing the shops (signed All Wards and Departments). At welcomers desk, turn left and take the stairs or lift to Level 1. AMU is further along the coridoor, past Radiology.

Any other information

Please store your belongings in the bedside lockers provided on the Unit. You are responsible for your own belongings during your stay in the AMU, and we suggest that any valuables should be sent home and money kept to a minimum.

Nearby facilities

Nearest refreshments

On level 2 in the Main Entrance Block:

  • convenience store  
  • coffee bar
  • restaurant on level 1 in South Block
  • League of Friends tea bar on level 2 in South Block

ATM machine: Opposite the reception desk on level 2 in the Main Entrance Block.

Useful Contacts

AMU Level 1, Centre Block
Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust
London Road
Reading RG1 5AN

0118 322 6936 or 0118 322 6937

Higher Monitoring Unit: 0118 322 8850


    Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust,
    London Road,
    RG1 5AN
    Email us
    Tel: 0118 322 5111
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