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Acute Med. 2014;13(3):104-7.

How to follow the NEWS.

Author information

Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Center, Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada.
Dundalk Institute of Technology, Dundalk, Ireland.



it is not known how best to respond to changes in the National Early Warning Score (NEWS) after hospital admission. This report manipulates and extrapolates previously published data on the trajectories of the abbreviated early warning score (AbEWS i.e. NEWS that does not include mental status).


trajectories of averaged AbEWS for patients for their first 5 days in hospital and their last 5 days in hospital were combined to obtain an approximation of what happens to the average patient while in hospital.


the trajectories of patients admitted with a low score are different from those admitted with a high score. Patients should be observed for 12 to 24 hours before their outcome can be predicted. The score of most patients who die in hospital trends upward on the second or third day after admission. Patients admitted with a score of 0-2 who raise their score to >=3 have a ten-fold increase in-hospital mortality.


the trajectories of early warning scores after admission are of prognostic importance, and escalation protocols should relate changes in the score to its initial value on admission.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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