A portable hand-held monitor (1) for monitoring vital signs is connected, via a single connector (7), with a cable (9). This cable ends up in a combiner (10) which, in turn, receives plugs (12a to 12d) leading, via cables (11a to 11d), to single sensors or transducers applied to a patient. Portable hand-held monitor (1) comprises a display (3) and internal memory means, in order to store recorded vital signs and to transmit them to a remote computer later on. As only a single cable (9) is required for connection with combiner (10), patient monitoring becomes quite easy if the combiner (10), cable (9) and the associated sensors and interconnection cables are left at or near the patient. In this case, a plug (8) connected with cable (9) has simply to be inserted into connector (7), in order to start data acquisition. The same simple approach may be used to monitor the next patient, and so on.