The ALERT™ system of assessment
When managing acutely ill patients, or those at risk of critical illness, it is vital to undertake a complete initial assessment of the patient and to undertake frequent reassessments. These are made easier if the assessment scheme is simplified and if every member of the healthcare team uses the same systematic approach. This reduces the likelihood of mistakes or misunderstanding, and ensures that the whole team is working towards a ‘common goal’.
The system used in ALERT™ is based upon the practices of experienced clinicians and follows the basic structure of many of the advanced life support courses. Regular reassessment is important in order to assess the effect of interventions and because patients may continue to deteriorate despite, or because of, treatment. The ALERT™ system of assessment is represented here: