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This activity is designed for nurses in any care setting where performing a rapid physical assessment may be part of providing patient care.


Commercial Support AcknowledgmentNo commercial support was provided for the development of this activity.

Statement of NeedIn today's busy and cost-conscious healthcare environment the ability to make a quick and accurate physical assessment of a patient is more important than ever. It can play a key role in identifying health issues requiring a more thorough physical assessment, determine the need for diagnostic tests, can begin the process of identifying and treating the primary complaint, and can disclose conditions that were unknown previously.

This activity is designed to instruct nurses on the steps required to perform a rapid physical assessment (RPA), including pre-assessment, general observations, and a physical examination.

Method of ParticipationTo complete this activity and obtain continuing education credit, you must do the following:

  • Read this Course Introduction / Disclosures section in its entirety.
  • Read the course material.
  • Complete the Post Test with a passing score of 80% or more.
  • Submit the online Activity Evaluation form.

    AccreditationMedcom/Trainex is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation*

    Medcom/Trainex is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the California Board of Registered Nursing (provider number CEP 9888), and the Florida Board of Nursing (provider number 50-1285).

    *Accreditation refers to recognition of educational activities only and does not imply Commission on Accreditation approval or endorsement of any product.

    Credit DesignationMedcom, Inc. designates this educational activity for 1 contact hour of continuing nursing education credit.

    OverviewThis course reviews the steps required to perform a rapid physical assessment, including pre-assessment, general observations, and physical examination. The results of this assessment will help reveal undiagnosed complaints and lay the groundwork for further testing that may be necessary. The material is organized around the following categories:

  • Introduction
  • Pre-Assessment
  • The Rapid Physical Assessment
  • Changing Approach When Necessary
  • Conclusion

    Learning ObjectivesAfter completing this course, the learner should be able to:

  • Describe what is involved in a rapid physical assessment.
  • Explain the importance and purpose of a rapid physical assessment.
  • Identify and perform pre-assessment tasks.
  • Make general observations about the patient's condition.
  • Perform a rapid physical assessment of major body regions.
  • Describe changing your approach immediately in the event of a highly abnormal finding, or if the patient expresses a crucial complaint.

    This educational activity was wholly developed, written, and produced by Medcom, Inc., G. Rand Rodriguez, editor. Anita Fitzgerald RN, MSN, served as subject matter expert in review of the content, and performed a content validation review. Marguerite Voorhees, RN, CNS, CPHQ, CPHRM, served as nurse planner.

    In accordance with ANCC Standards, parallel documents from other accrediting bodies, and Medcom, Inc. policy, the learner is hereby informed that the planners and staff of Medcom, Inc., and the content validation reviewer(s) involved with this activity have reported no relevant financial relationships with commercial interests. Furthermore, there is no discussion in this activity about the use of products for non FDA-approved indications.

    Unnapproved Use DisclosureMedcom, Inc. requires authors and content validation reviewers to disclose to the learner when products or procedures being discussed are off-label, unlabeled, experimental, and/or investigational (not FDA approved); and any limitations on the information that is presented, such as data that are preliminary or that represent ongoing research, interim analyses, and/or unsupported opinion. Authors of this activity may present information about pharmaceutical agents that is outside of U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved labeling. This information is intended solely for continuing medical education and is not intended to promote off-label use of these medications. If you have questions, contact the medical affairs department of the manufacturer for the most recent prescribing information.

    As in all educational activities, we encourage the practitioners to use their own judgment in treating and addressing the needs of each individual patient, taking into account the patient's unique clinical situation. Medcom disclaims any liability and/or loss resulting from the information contained in this activity. The learner specifically agrees to indemnify and hold Medcom, the creators, producers, and distributors of this activity harmless against any and all claims or liabilities arising out of the use of any information provided in this activity by the learner, or by anyone directly or indirectly obtaining such information through the learner.

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    Rapid Physical Assessment Online course
    • Course ID:
      245030
    • Duration:
      n/a
    • Price:
      $50