Journal Article
Review

Outreach and Early Warning Systems (EWS) for the prevention of Intensive Care admission and death of critically ill adult patients on general hospital wards.

McGaughey J; Alderdice F; Fowler R; Kapila A; Mayhew A; Moutray M.

Medical emergency teams (also referred to as rapid response teams or critical care outreach teams) are being widely implemented in the US and worldwide. However, their effect on clinical outcomes remains controversial, as a prior commentary found no conclusive evidence of benefits. This systematic review found that most studies of medical emergency teams were of such poor methodologic quality that their results could not be generalized. Only two prospective controlled studies of outreach teams were identified, which demonstrated mixed results on patient outcomes.