Recognising and Responding to Deterioration

Serious adverse events such as unexpected death and cardiac arrest are often preceded by observable physiological and clinical abnormalities. Other serious events such as suicide or aggression are are also often preceded by observed or reported changes in a person's behaviours or mood that can indicate a deterioration in their mental state. 

Early identification of deterioration may improve outcomes and lessen the intervention required for patients whose condition deteriorates. 

A number of resources have been developed by the Commission to ensure acute deterioration is recognised promptly and appropriate actions are taken  when patients are in hospital. Acute deterioration includes physiological changes, as well as changes in cognition and mental state.

National Consensus Statements - Acute Deterioration

  • NCS physiological front cover
    Physiological

    Sets out the agreed practice for recognising and responding to acute physiological deterioration and applies to all patients in all acute care facilities in Australia.

  • Mental health- cover
    Mental health

    Guidance to health service organisations to safely, collaboratively and effectively recognise and respond to deterioration in a person’s mental state.

Safe high-quality care