Rapid response teams: A review of data collection practice in Victoria, Australia

Published:January 17, 2022DOI:



      Successful implementation of rapid response teams (RRTs) requires robust data collection and reporting processes. However, there is variation in data collection practice in RRT activity between hospitals, leading to difficulties in quality review, collaboration and research. Although a standardised RRT data collection model would be a key step in addressing this, there is uncertainty regarding existing RRT data collection practice across Victoria.


      This study was endorsed by Safer Care Victoria (SCV) to evaluate existing RRT data collection practice across Victoria.


      Between 2016 and 2017, hospitals in Victoria were surveyed on data collection practice for RRT activity. Data collected included the fields populated and the mode of data collection. Qualitative content analysis, utilising a blend of pre-existing frameworks and ground-up data-driven approaches for derivation of a coding frame, was used to identify common categories. Validation of the analysis and results was performed by consultation with stakeholder groups.


      Twenty five hospitals across 18 health networks contributed data, with a mix of tertiary (9/25), metropolitan (11/25) and rural (5/25) hospitals. Seven hospitals collected data electronically, the remainder using paper with abstraction to electronic spreadsheets. None of the hospitals linked with existing hospital data systems to reduce manual data entry requirements. Dataset size varied from 16 to 97 variables but demonstrated content consistency and could be mapped onto seven key categories (comprising antecedent, afferent, event, post-event, audit, context and patient data). Within each category, there was substantial variation in terminology and variable values, but consistency in the collection of a certain subset of variables.


      Despite broad variation in data collection practice, existing datasets can be readily mapped into seven key categories, with the consistent collection of a subset of variables within each category. These variables could inform the development of a minimum dataset within a standardised RRT reporting framework and accommodate data submission from hospitals of differing resource bases.


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