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Cross-sectional study
Assessing beyond vital signs to detect early patient deterioration
  1. Wei Ling Chua,
  2. Sok Ying Liaw
  1. Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore
  1. Correspondence to : Dr Sok Ying Liaw, Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies, Level 2, Clinical Research Centre, Block MD 11, 10 Medical Drive, Singapore 117597; nurliaw{at}

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Implications for practice and research

  • Sole reliance on the use of vital signs assessment may direct nurses’ attention in detecting late stages of clinical deterioration.

  • The importance of performing in-depth physical assessment to detect early signs of clinical deterioration needs to be highlighted to nurses.

  • Further research to examine nurses’ utilisation of physical assessment skills with existing track and trigger models is warranted.


Existing track and trigger models that improve early recognition and response to patient deterioration are based on the recognition of vital signs derangement to trigger a medical response.1 This causes …

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  • Competing interests None declared.