Public Release: 

Early ID of physiological deterioration and appropriate care improves sepsis outcomes

American College of Chest Physicians

MONTREAL (October 19, 2015)-- Researchers from Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, evaluated the rapid response system (RRS) training program on call rates and code blue events and found significant improvements were made in staff awareness and patient outcomes. The study was developed by the knowledge that critical deterioration in patients is often preceded by measurable signs of physiological worsening hours prior to the event.

A quasi-experimental pretest, and posttest design were used to access the outcomes of a formal RRS at a large military medical center. Implementation of training consisted of long lectures and computer- and marketing-based training in critical care nurses and respiratory therapists. After training, the average number of calls per month rose from 39 to 123 calls. The mean number for code blue events decreased from 1.5 codes per month to zero per month. The top three etiologies for RRS initiation were from tachycardia (27%), hypotension (23%), and staff concern (15%).

"Early identification of physiological deterioration with implementation of appropriate care can improve sepsis outcomes," said CPT Nathan Boyer, MD, Brooke Army Medical Center and lead researcher.


Further results will be shared on Sunday, October 25, 2015, at 7:30 am at Palais des congrès de Montréal, room 512dh. The study abstract can be viewed on the journal CHEST website (

CHEST Annual Meeting 2015 is the 81st annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST), held October 24-28, 2015, in Montreal. CHEST, publisher of the journal CHEST, is the global leader in advancing best patient outcomes through innovative chest medicine education, clinical research, and team-based care. Its mission is to champion the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of chest diseases through education, communication, and research. It serves as an essential connection to clinical knowledge and resources for its 18,700 members from around the world who provide patient care in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine. For information about the CHEST, visit, or follow the CHEST meeting hashtag, #CHEST2015, on social media.

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