Early Warning Signs (EWS)
Early Warning System is a real time predictive model that identifies patients at risk for clinical deterioration while in the hospital. An alert is provided to the rapid response team who can assess the patient and make appropriate interventions including medications, labs, invasive procedures, consultations and ICU transfers.
Identifying early physiologic deterioration to reduce mortality and unplanned ICU transfers is a National Patient Safety Goal. Achieving this goal remains challenge as current methods are often manual, onerous for an already overburdened nursing staff, fail to systematically monitor all patients, and show modest accuracy in identifying critically ill patients. In addition to higher mortality risk, patients who are transferred to the ICU also incur greater costs, longer lengths of stay, and increased risk for hospital acquired conditions thus prevention of these events could potentially lead to reduced costs and improved capacity/throughput.