Royal Darwin Hospital

Outpatient department

To see a specialist in the outpatient department (OPD), you must have a written referral from an authorised healthcare professional.

Without this referral, you cannot make an appointment.

Find out more below.

Once your referral has been reviewed by the specialist, you will be:

  • placed on the waiting list
  • sent a waitlist letter.

When a non-urgent appointment becomes available, you will be sent an appointment letter.

If your appointment is urgent, you will be contacted on the phone number that’s on record. This is so the OPD can reach you in time for you to attend your appointment.

If you have a mobile phone, you will also receive a text message 3 days before to remind you about your appointment.

You must notify the OPD if:

  • your phone number or address changes
  • you no longer need your appointment.

Getting help from an interpreter

If you need help to understand information at your appointment, you can request an interpreter.

They can be:

  • present at the appointment
  • available via video conference or over the phone.

This service is free for you and can be requested when your appointment is booked with OPD.

You can also book an interpreter yourself. Find out how to book an interpreter for Aboriginal languages or non-Aboriginal languages.

You should arrive on time for your appointment. If you're late, the doctor may not be able to see you.

You must also bring your:

  • current Medicare, concession, Veterans Affairs or defence personnel card – if you don’t have one of these cards, you may be charged extra fees
  • recent tests you may have had such as:
    • blood results
    • x-rays
    • scans
  • current medications or a written list of them
  • appointment letter or text message.

To keep you busy while you wait for the doctor, you may also want to bring a book or magazine.

To find the OPD, follow the signs from the hospital’s main entrance or ask a way finders for assistance.

Find out how to get to Royal Darwin Hospital and where to park PDF (336.7 KB).

In emergency situations, your appointment may be postponed. If this happens, you will be offered a new appointment.

If you cannot attend your appointment, you must give the OPD at least 24 hours’ notice so they can offer that appointment to another patient. They will also reschedule your appointment to the next one available.

If you don’t attend your appointment, you should contact the OPD within 30 days. If you don’t, you may be discharged from the waiting list.

Your medical history will also be reviewed by a specialist. They will decide if you still need care. If they decide, you:

  • still need care, OPD will book you another appointment
  • no longer need care, you may be removed from the waiting list.

They will also consider your circumstances if you’re experiencing genuine hardship or are disadvantaged.


The OPD are open Monday to Friday from 8am to 4pm except all public holidays in the Northern Territory.

To submit your referral, email

If you want to reschedule or cancel your appointment, call 08 8922 8699 or email

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Last updated: 30 May 2022

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