Characteristics of Adult Rapid Response Events in a Freestanding Children’s Hospital

Jennifer N. Chalam, Jennifer Noble, Amy M. DeLaroche, Robert R. Ehrman, Katherine Cashen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVES: To describe nonhospitalized adult rapid response events (adult RREs) in a freestanding children’s hospital and examine the relationship between various demographic and clinical factors with the final patient disposition. METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed records for nonhospitalized patients $18 years of age from events that occurred in a freestanding pediatric hospital between January 2011 through December 2020. We examined the relationship between adult RREs and patient demographic information, medical history, interventions, and patient disposition following an adult RRE. RESULTS: Four hundred twenty-nine events met inclusion criteria for analysis. Most events (69%) occurred in females, 49% of events occurred in family members of patients, and 47% occurred on inpatient floor and ICU areas. The most common presenting complaint was syncope or dizziness (36%). Delivery of bad news or grief response was associated with 14% of adult RREs. Overall, 46% (n 5 196) of patients were transferred to the pediatric emergency department (ED). Patients requiring acute intervention or with cardiac or neurologic past medical histories were more likely to be transferred to the pediatric ED. Acute advanced cardiac life support interventions were infrequent but, of the patients taken to the pediatric ED, 1 died, and 3 were admitted to the ICU. CONCLUSIONS: Adult RREs are common in freestanding children’s hospitals and, although rare, some patients required critical care. Expertise in adult critical care management should be available to the rapid response team and additional training for the pediatric rapid response team in caring for adult nonpatients may be warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1058-1065
Number of pages8
JournalHospital pediatrics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2022


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