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Emergency Airway Response Team (EART) Documentation

Criteria, Feasibility, and Usability

Crimlisk, Janet T. DNP, RNCS, NP-C; Krisciunas, Gintas P. MPH, MA; Sipe, Margie H. DNP, RN, NEA-BC; Winter, Michael R. MPH; Gonzalez, R. Mauricio MD; Grillone, Gregory A. MD, FACS

doi: 10.1097/CNQ.0000000000000230
Original Articles

Patients in an acute care hospital who experience a difficult airway event outside the operating room need a specialized emergency airway response team (EART) immediately. This designated team manages catastrophic airway events using advanced airway techniques as well as surgical intervention. Nurses respond as part of this team. There are no identified difficult airway team documentation instruments in the literature, and the lack of metrics limits the quality review of the team response. This study identified EART documentation criteria and incorporated them into a nursing documentation instrument to be completed by a nurse scribe during the event. The EART instrument was tested by nurses for usability, feasibility, and completeness. Twenty-one critical care nurses participated in this study. The results confirmed good usability, positive feasibility, and 79% documentation completeness using this tool. These criteria and this instrument can be important in documenting the EART and in evaluating the quality of the team performance.

Departments of Nursing (Dr Crimlisk) and Otolaryngology (Mr Krisciunas), Boston University Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts; MGH Institute of Health Professions, Boston, Massachusetts (Dr Sipe); Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts (Mr Winter); and Departments of Anesthesiology (Dr Gonzalez) and Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (Dr Grillone), Boston Medical Center, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts.

Correspondence: Janet T. Crimlisk, DNP, RNCS, NP-C, Department of Nursing, Boston Medical Center, 818 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA 02118 (

The authors would like to acknowledge the commitment and support of the critical care nurses and the Solomont Simulation Center team in this project.

The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

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