Research and commentary

Advantages of paper versus electronic versions of paediatric early warning scoring systems

Recommended to assist nurses in detecting deterioration in children PEWS systems have been heralded as a panacea for poor record keeping of vital signs observations

Recommended to assist nurses in detecting deterioration in children PEWS systems have been heralded as a panacea for poor record keeping of vital signs observations

Sefton G, Lane S, Killen R et al (2017) Accuracy and efficiency of recording pediatric early warning scores using an electronic physiological surveillance system compared with traditional paper-based documentation. Computers, Informatics, Nursing. 35, 5, 228-236.

Background and aim

Paediatric early warning scores (PEWS) are recommended to assist clinicians in recognising early signs of deterioration. This feasibility study explored whether electronic recording of PEWS improved accuracy and decreased recording time.

Methods

A purposeful sample of nurse, healthcare assistants and medical students recorded the PEWS of five vignettes of vital signs and clinical observation using paper and electronic charting. The order of charting (paper then electronic or electronic then paper) was randomised and each

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