Sample Paper on Nursing Continuous Assessment Tools

Nursing assessment entails the gathering of information regarding patients’, communities’ or families’ spiritual, psychological, social, or physiological status by qualified, registered nurses (Higginbottom et al., 2011). Typically, such an assessment is usually the first stride in the nursing process. For most nurses, clinical interview serves as the step towards creating a good rapport with the patients.  RNs use different tools to assess families and communities to establish their health care needs.  This paper compares and contrasts key among these tools.

One of the simplest and common tools used by nurses to assess family and community needs is the use of general health questionnaires and interviews. Here, the RN will develop some standard questions touching on the health status of the target group. The audience will be prompted to answer the questions honestly and to the best of their knowledge. Items that may be asked include health support, social health, and environmental health (Craig et al., 2015). As opposed to the other complex tools, interviews and questionnaires are cheaper.

Nurses can also use Activities of daily living to access the health status of families and communities. Analyzing ADLs serves as a good indicator of the universal health care risks facing the target group (Higginbottom et al., 2011). Key activities that can be analyzed include feeding behaviors homemaking, leisure, grooming, and work activities. The Barthel Scale can be used alongside ADLs to measure how the daily activities are performed.  Both ADL analysis and use of questionnaires are patient-centered and focus on establishing the primary healthcare needs.

Tools such as Waterlow score can measure the estimated risk of developing blood pressure complications in the target community. Upon collection of the relevant data, nurses also need to use data analysis tools. Standard tools used to analyze data include; CDC EZ Text software, excel spreadsheets, and WISQARS (Craig et al., 2015). Although these tools may have the same purpose, their complexity, and ease of use vary.


Craig, C., Chadborn, N., Sands, G., Tuomainen, H., & Gladman, J. (2015). Systematic review of EASY-care needs assessment for community-dwelling older people. Age and ageing44(4), 559-565.

Higginbottom, G. M., Richter, M. S., Mogale, R. S., Ortiz, L., Young, S., & Mollel, O. (2011). Identification of nursing assessment models/tools validated in clinical practice for use with diverse ethno-cultural groups: an integrative review of the literature. BMC nursing10(1), 16.