Defense Date


Graduation Date

Fall 12-17-2021

Submission Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program


School of Nursing

Faculty Mentor

Pamela Spigelmyer


rapid response system, rapid response team, acute care


Between the years 2004-2008, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and The Joint Commission made a recommendation for healthcare facilities nationwide to implement rapid response systems (RRS). Rapid response systems consist of four limbs: recognition and alert (afferent); response and providing timely patient management (efferent); delivering support and oversight (administrative), and monitoring the RRS patient outcome data (quality improvement). The intent of implementing RRS was to increase patient safety and outcomes within the acute care setting. The following question (PICO) formed the basis of the project: “How does the current rapid response system workflow compare to the rapid response system pre-COVID-19 pandemic in terms of lower mortality rates, non-ICU code blues, and workflow?” A program evaluation was conducted to assess the rapid response system at a large Catholic, academic, Level 1 trauma health system (547 beds), using the W.K. Kellogg Step-by-Step Guide to Program Evaluation. The evaluation revealed that this medical facility’s RRS had not been reviewed since early 2015 (concluding in December 2017). A few years after this formal review, the COVID-19 pandemic struck in early 2020. To conduct a current evaluation, descriptive statistics were utilized to summarize the outcome data and retrospective quantitative data was obtained from the hospital’s quality and analytics department for FY2019-FY2021 (two fiscal years). The goal of this evaluation was to determine how or if the RRS had been affected during the 2020 COVID-19 surge. This program evaluation of the rapid response system is key to understanding why frequent assessments of these critical programs are vital to reduce patient mortality and maintain RRS workflow.

Keywords: rapid response system, rapid response team, acute care



Included in

Nursing Commons