Patient physiological status at the emergency department-ward interface and emergency calls for clinical deterioration during early hospital admission

Julie Considine, Daryl Jones, David Pilcher, Judy Currey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aims: To examine the relationship between physiological status at the emergency department-ward interface and emergency calls (medical emergency team or cardiac arrest team activation) during the first 72hours of hospital admission. Background: Ward adverse events are related to abnormal physiology in emergency department however the relationship between physiology at the emergency department-ward interface and ward adverse events is unknown. Design: Descriptive and exploratory design. Methods: The study involved 1980 patients at three hospitals in Melbourne Australia: i) 660 randomly selected adults admitted via the emergency department to medical or surgical wards during 2012 and who had an emergency call; and ii) 1320 adults without emergency calls matched for gender, triage category, usual residence, admitting unit and age. Results/findings: The median age was 78years and 488% were males. The median time to the first emergency call was 188hours and ≥1 abnormal parameters were documented in 349% of patients during the last hour of ED care and 471% of patients during first hour of ward care. Emergency calls were significantly more common in patients with heart rate and conscious state abnormalities during the last hour of emergency care and abnormal oxygen saturation, heart rate or respiratory rate during the first hour of ward care. Medical emergency team afferent limb failure occurred in 553% patients with medical emergency team activation criteria during first hour of ward care. Conclusion: The use of physiological status at the emergency department-ward interface to guide care planning and reasons for and outcomes of medical emergency team afferent limb failure are important areas for future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1287-1300
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
Volume72
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Emergency nursing
  • Patient safety
  • Rapid response teams
  • Risk management

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