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How to assess deteriorating patients

Barker, M; Rushton, MA; Smith, J


M Barker


This article aims to help practitioners to undertake the assessment of
deteriorating patients using a standardised ABCDE (airway, breathing,
circulation, disability, exposure) approach that allows the practitioner
to assess the patient in a structured and timely manner, and to identify
the specific needs of the patient using the look, listen and feel method.
Systematic assessment is central to recognising a deteriorating
patient and to taking timely and appropriate action to minimise the
incidence of further deterioration.
The ABCDE approach can be used to identify patients at risk of
becoming acutely unwell and to summon appropriate assistance at
an early stage.
The practitioner should review obtained physiological data to develop
an effective management plan and indicate future investigations


Barker, M., Rushton, M., & Smith, J. (2015). How to assess deteriorating patients. Nursing Standard, 30(11), 34-36.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 4, 2014
Publication Date Nov 11, 2015
Deposit Date May 6, 2016
Journal Nursing Standard
Print ISSN 0029-6570
Electronic ISSN 2047-9018
Publisher RCN Publishing
Volume 30
Issue 11
Pages 34-36
Publisher URL
Related Public URLs
Additional Information Funders : Nursing Standard