Safety and Quality > Recognising and Responding to Clinical Deterioration > Survey of Recognition and Response Systems in Australia

Survey of Recognition and Response Systems in Australia

Recognition and response systems are formal systems to support staff to promptly, accurately and reliably recognise patients whose condition is deteriorating clinically and to respond appropriately to stabilise the patient. They include policies and protocols covering issues such as measurement and documentation of observations and escalation of care, use of formal handover protocols, mechanisms for providing a rapid response when clinical deterioration occurs, governance frameworks, and processes for providing education and evaluating performance.
One of the key ways for the Commission to achieve the goal of this program is by providing resources, information and tools to support jurisdictions, health services and public and private hospitals to optimise their recognition and response systems. To be able to do this effectively, the Commission needs to know about what systems are in place, what gaps exist, and what the needs of hospitals are. We have some information about the recognition and response systems that hospitals have in place, particularly regarding the response to clinical deterioration. Some Australian hospitals have published details of their MET services, and information about systems to support early recognition of deterioration is now beginning to be published. However overall there is very limited information available about the recognition and response systems and practices in place more broadly, particularly outside the large public hospitals that have published on this subject.
To address this issue, and to inform its own planning, the Commission has conducted a national survey of recognition and response systems in Australian hospitals. The results of this survey and discussion of implications for the work of the Commission is available for download:
Survey of Recognition and Response Systems – Summary of Findings (PDF 203 KB)