Escalation Mapping Template

The Escalation Mapping Template (EMT) will help to determine which processes for recognising and responding to deterioration in a person’s mental state are working effectively, and identify if there are any problems and/or gaps in current processes.

What is the EMT?

The Escalation Mapping Template (EMT) is a quality improvement tool to assess the efficacy of health service providers’ systems to recognise and respond to deterioration in a person’s mental state. The EMT supports services to map the alignment of their local processes to the systemic recognition and response model and to evaluate the effectiveness of their processes.

The EMT will also support services to implement actions in the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards, by helping you review what is working in your local context, and what might be improved.

It contains links to tools and resources currently used in clinical practice in health settings across Australia.

What the EMT does

The EMT is a Microsoft Excel tool, which consists of three sections. The first section provides guidance about setting up the team that will participate in the escalation mapping process, defining the local scope and planning a communication strategy.

The second section comprises ten worksheets that guide the mapping of different aspects of the escalation process. The worksheets include links to resources currently used in clinical practice. They also link to actions in the NSQHS Standards.

The third section is a current status report. This is automatically generated when earlier worksheets are completed and provides a snapshot of current processes.

What the EMT does not do

The EMT provides a template for mapping processes. It is not a tool for clinicians to use to monitor a person’s mental state.

The Commission has received requests for a chart, similar to those used to monitor physiological observations, to monitor changes in a person’s mental state. Many of these requests have come from system administrators, though a few were from clinicians.

The Commission has consulted broadly, and conducted several literature reviews, and no equivalent chart has been identified. A fundamental problem is that mental state is not measurable in the same way as physical observations and the parameters that represent critical change differ across individuals. The Commission has engaged with several groups who have developed prototype charts and will provide updates on these as information becomes available. Feedback, both from the Commission’s consultation and from the groups piloting charts, is that the charts do not support engagement with the person receiving care. It is this engagement which is viewed as key to early recognition and collaborative response to changes in a person’s mental state.

Download the EMT

To download the EMT, click here.


The Commission will plan to review this resource in six months, and in the meantime welcomes any feedback you may have.

If you have any feedback or enquires about the EMT, please email: