Vital signs and clinical parameters of febrile children attending out-of-hours general practice

Fisher, Stacey Jayne and Jonker, Leon ORCID logo ORCID: (2012) Vital signs and clinical parameters of febrile children attending out-of-hours general practice. Online Journal of Clinical Audits, 4 (4).

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Aims: To audit the recording of febrile paediatric patient examination in out-of-hours General Practice by both general practitioners and nursing staff.

Methods: The standards taken from NICE clinical guideline CG47, feverish illness in children – assessment and initial management in children younger than 5 years, were measured. A data collection sheet was devised and used for the 100 randomly selected patients that attended in the first week of April 2012 with at least fever symptoms.

Results: A total of 96/100 patients (96%) had their temperature measured. Heart rate, respiratory rate, and capillary refill time were measured less often – in 73%, 48% and 44% of cases respectively. However, only 18% of patients had all four vital signs recorded during consultation. Recording of ‘traffic light’ parameters and symptoms took place irregularly, with e.g. hydration status recorded in 38% of cases. However, 86% of parents were given verbal advice in terms of potential follow-up should the patient not improve or deteriorate.

Conclusions: Compliance to NICE guidelines is very high in terms of the key parameter, temperature, but other vital signs and also clinical signs are recorded less often. Although results of this audit compare favourably with other published audit data on this exact topic, increased staff awareness through training is indicated. The introduction of an assessment tool based on NICE guidance is being considered to improve compliance further.

Item Type: Article
Journal / Publication Title: Online Journal of Clinical Audits
ISSN: 2042-4779
Departments: Academic Departments > Medical & Sport Sciences (MSS) > Health and Medical Sciences
Depositing User: Anna Lupton
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2017 15:58
Last Modified: 12 Jan 2024 10:31


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