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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

The effect of a rapid response team on major clinical outcome measures in a community hospital.

Dacey MJ, Mirza ER, Wilcox V, et al. Critical care medicine. 2007;35:2076-82.

The widespread implementation of rapid response systems (RRS) has led to the development of several different models, ranging from physician-led teams (termed medical emergency teams) to teams led by nurses or mid-level practitioners (termed rapid response teams). The published literature on RRS has generally evaluated the effects of physician-led teams. Conducted at a community hospital in Rhode Island, this study assessed the effect of an RRS led by specially trained physician assistants. Implementation of the team was associated with a decline in cardiac arrests and unplanned admissions to the intensive care unit. Though the overall effectiveness of RRS remains controversial, this study’s results provide useful data to support an increasingly common RRS model.