The aim of this project was to introduce and evaluate the Call 4 Concern© (C4C) service, which provides patients and relatives with direct access to critical care outreach services (CCOS). This allows patients and relatives an additional platform to raise concerns related to the clinical condition and facilitate early recognition of a deteriorating patient.
The introduction of Call 4 Concern at a district general hospital was inspired by the Royal Berkshire Hospital, where staff have been pioneering the service in the UK since 2009. They were able to demonstrate the potential to prevent clinical deterioration and improve the patients' and relatives' experiences.
The project was originally inspired by the Condition H(elp) system in the USA, which was set up following the death of an 18-month-old child who died of preventable causes. Similar tragic cases in the USA and the UK have prompted campaigning by affected families, resulting in the widespread adoption of comparable services.
The project was rolled out in the authors' trust for all adult inpatients. There was a 2-week implementation phase to raise awareness. Between 22 February 2022 and 22 February 2023, the CCOS team received 39 C4C referrals, representing approximately 2.13% of the total CCOS activity. Clinical deterioration of a patient was prevented in at least three cases, alongside overwhelming positive feedback from service users.