Best Pract Res Clin Anaesthesiol. 2021 May;35(1):105-113. doi: 10.1016/j.bpa.2020.12.013. Epub 2021 Jan 6.
Early warning scores (EWS) have the objective to provide a preventive approach for detecting those patients in general wards at risk of deterioration before it begins. Well implemented and combined with a tiered response, the EWS expect to be a relevant tool for patient safety. Most of the evidence for their use has been published for the general EWS. Their strengths, such as objectivity and systematic response, health provider training, universal applicability and automatization potential need to be highlighted to counterbalance the weakness and limitations that have also been described. The near future will probably increase availability of EWS, reliability and predictive value through the spread and acceptability of continuous monitoring in general ward, its integration in decision support algorithms with automatic alerts and the elaboration of temporal vital signs patterns that will finally allow to perform a personal modelling depending on individual patient characteristics.