A consistent sedation policy is the key to good agitation management.  This means staff can develop an expectation of patient responses to the drugs used to reduce agitation.  This allows staff to appropriately customise care for each patient.  In contrast, ad hoc approaches result in over customised care and over-sedation.


It is important to define the RASS score each day.  This is to be written on the 24 hour chart.  In most cases, patients should open their eyes to voice, but may drift off to sleep when there is no on-going stimulation.  This corresponds to a RASS score of -1 to -3 as shown in the red box in figure 3.


To view the RASS Scale.pdf



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Page last reviewed: 14 May 2014