Two simple replacements for the Triage Early Warning Score to facilitate the South African Triage Scale in low resource settings

Kitovu Hospital Study Group

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Background: The South African Triage Scale (SATS) requires the calculation of the Triage Early Warning Score (TEWS), which takes time and is prone to error. Aim: to derive and validate triage scores from a clinical database collected in a low-resource hospital in sub-Saharan Africa over four years and compare them with the ability of TEWS to triage patients. Methods: A retrospective observational study carried out in Kitovu Hospital, Masaka, Uganda as part of an ongoing quality improvement project. Data collected on 4482 patients was divided into two equal cohorts: one for the derivation of scores by logistic regression and the other for their validation. Results: Two scores identified the largest number of patients with the lowest in-hospital mortality. A score based on oxygen saturation, mental status and mobility had a c statistic for discrimination of 0.83 (95% CI 0.079–0.87) in the derivation, and 0.81 (95% CI 0.77–0.86) in the validation cohort. Another score based on respiratory rate, mental status and mobility had a c statistic of 0.82 (95% CI 0.078–0.87) in the derivation, and 0.81 (95% CI 0.77–0.86) in the validation cohort. The oxygen saturation-based score of zero points identified 51% of patients in the derivation cohort who had in-hospital mortality rate of 0.5%, and 49% of patients in the validation cohort who had in-hospital mortality of 1.0%. A respiratory rate-based score of zero points identified 45% in the derivation cohort who had in-hospital mortality rate of 0.5%, and 44% of patients in the validation cohort who had in-hospital mortality of 0.8%. Both scores had comparable performance to TEWS. Conclusion: Two easy to calculate scores have comparable performance to TEWS and, therefore, could replace it to facilitate the adoption of SATS in low-resource settings.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAfrican Journal of Emergency Medicine
Volume11
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)53-59
ISSN2211-419X
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021

Keywords

  • Emergency department
  • Low resource setting
  • Predictive scores
  • Triage

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