2 Notes on the scope of the guidance

NICE guidelines are developed in accordance with a scope that defines what the guideline will and will not cover.

The aim of this guideline is to provide evidence-based recommendations to guide healthcare professionals in the appropriate care of acutely ill patients in hospital.

Areas covered by this guideline

This guideline provides guidance on:

  • Identification of patients who are at risk of clinical deterioration or whose clinical condition is deteriorating. This includes assessment of:

    • scoring tools that record physiological parameters and neurological state

    • the level of monitoring needed and the recording and interpretation of the data obtained.

  • Response strategies to manage patients who are at risk of clinical deterioration or whose clinical condition is deteriorating, including:

    • the timing of response and patient management

    • the communication of monitoring results to relevant healthcare professionals, including the interface between critical care and acute specialties.

  • Transfer of patients from critical care areas. This includes:

    • monitoring requirements.

    • timing of transfer.

Areas outside the remit of this guideline

This guideline does not address care that should be provided to: children, dying patients receiving palliative care or patients in critical care areas who are directly under the care of critical care consultants. It does not address the decision to discharge a patient from a critical care area.

  • National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)