New Screening Tool Developed to Identify Hospitalized Patients at Risk of Wandering

March 26, 2014 | Strategic Insights for Health System


An article in the March 2014 issue of the Journal of Gerontological Nursing discusses the development and implementation of a new two-question screening tool for the identification of hospitalized patients at risk for wandering. The Wandering Risk Assessment and Intervention Form was incorporated into the electronic health record system of one hospital and prompted bedside nurses to determine if the patient had any current concerns related to wandering and whether the patient was able to move independently or with minimal assistance and had impairment (e.g., cognitive impairment). If the patient was determined to be at risk, the program required nine interventions and offered an additional seven potential interventions to reduce the risk. The authors state that this is the first screening tool developed for a hospital setting; there are validated wandering screening tools for long-term care, but they are often impractical for use in hospitals.

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