Continuous Electronic Monitoring
Electronic monitoring is used by healthcare professionals as an adjunct to assessment and treatment. Monitors are not substitutes for nursing and physician assessment and care.
Indications for use
Continuous electronic monitoring is only indicated for patients who are at risk of an anticipated adverse event, and for whom knowledge of the change will result in an intervention. Continuous electronic monitoring is an adjunct to patient care when periodic vital sign monitoring does not provide frequent enough assessment and/or by providing an alert when the patient’s vital signs have deviated outside an identified acceptable range.
The purpose of monitoring with alarms on the general wards is that warning of changing physiology will be given before irreversible untoward events occur.
Alarms that do not indicate a true change or deterioration in physiological status
False alarms must be differentiated from true alarms when an electronic monitor sounds frequently
Setting Alarm limits
By setting appropriate alarm limits you will be alerted to changes that you have assessed to be abnormal for a child.
10% below baseline
100% unless otherwise indicated
35% below baseline
50% above baseline
25% below baseline
25% above baseline
If a Monitor Alarm Sounds…
- Respond immediately
- First assess the patient and determine if the patient requires any intervention; take manual vital signs as necessary
- If the patient requires, attend to the needs as indicated and document relevant information - assessment, action taken and outcome
- If the alarm was not triggered by a patient incident, check monitoring equipment and all connections, replacing electrodes (reposition as necessary), lead, or cable as required
Contact Medical Engineering if the equipment is defective. Accurately and thoroughly complete the equipment repair tag and risk report as necessary, and send all components of the defective equipment to Medical Engineering (e.g. leads, cables)