I agree Claire, it becomes extremely difficult to screen those patients that have high NEWS but are stable with a plan and those that may not fit into certain categories that are at great risk of deterioration.
Part of the reason, I think, is because of the high quantity of patients that score NEWS throughout the day, and nursing staff feel they need to alert CCOT for majority of them, not because they are worried necessarily but because it says in the policy and they are worried that if they don't they will be held responsible.
In turn, we are conditioning the nursing population to move away from using nursing intuition and losing the confidence to make clinical decisions. In some ways, they are relying on electronic systems to tell them what to do with their patients instead of their nursing experience and knowledge kicking in.
We are receiving more and more referrals where staff members don't really know why they are referring, just that the 'policy says so'. And we are seeing less conversations where staff are aware of their patients scoring, have assessed the patient themselves, had a medic review them and are happy that there is a plan in place.
Whether this is the new generation of nurses we are seeing, or due to the transition to electronic systems/ devices, the fear of litigation or the lack of time for nursing staff to care for their sick patients.
We provide training about the CCOT and all aspects deteriorating patients varying from nursing students, medical students and all grades which should off set some of the difficulties. Despite this, the route of the problem is still unknown and so I do not have any magical solutions. Sorry.
Would love to find out if anyone else is having similar experiences and/or if anyone has any suggestions to help?