Development and Testing of the interRAI Acute Care: A Standardized Assessment Administered by Nurses for Patients Admitted to Acute Care

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Gray, LC
Beattie, E
Boscart, VM
Henderson, A
Hornby-Turner, YC
Hubbard, RE
Wood, S
Peel, NM
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Background: Underpinning standards for developing comprehensive care in hospital is the need to identify, early in the admission process, functional and psychosocial issues which affect patient outcomes. Despite the value of comprehensive assessment of patients on admission, the process is often sub-optimal due to a lack of standardized assessment practices. This project aimed to develop a concise, integrated assessment for patients admitted to acute care and test its psychometric properties. Methods: Two international expert panels of clinicians and health scientists collaborated to establish design parameters. Using clinical observations and a variety of derivative applications sourced from the interRAI research collaborative repository, the panels constructed a draft instrument to examine feasibility, resource requirements, and inter-rater reliability. Field testing was conducted in Australia and Canada. Next, the system was revised to its final form, the interRAI Acute Care, after feedback and review from international interRAI members. Results: Constructed using 56 items, the interRAI Acute Care required a median of 15 minutes to complete. Inter-rater reliability tested on 130 paired assessments was substantial to almost perfect for 78% of the clinical items and moderate for the remaining 22% of items. A subset of 30 items from the admission assessment comprised the discharge assessment. Discussion: The interRAI Acute Care has been shown to be an efficient nursing assessment instrument with good psychometric properties. Implementation in a digital environment will enable documentation and care planning to comply with standards for quality of care in the general adult hospital population.

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Health Services Insights

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© The Author(s) 2018. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License ( which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (

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Gray, LC; Beattie, E; Boscart, VM; Henderson, A; Hornby-Turner, YC; Hubbard, RE; Wood, S; Peel, NM, Development and Testing of the interRAI Acute Care: A Standardized Assessment Administered by Nurses for Patients Admitted to Acute Care, Health Services Insights, 2018, 11