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Telephone Triage Guideline Competency (2017)


Includes one volume of 5-Level Telephone Triage Triage Guidelines for Adult, Infant-Child, or School Age Populations, Audiolink to 10 Case studies.

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  This CE course explains the process of telephone triage, as well as how to correctly operate Adult Telephone Triage Guidelines.  Telephone triage guidelines (or protocols) are decision support tools, in paper or in software format, utilized by nurses in telephone triage. These “expert systems” provide standards for the interview and assessment process, and should be based on the nursing process.

Provider: Sheila Wheeler is a CE Provider and has been approved by California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #10680. This course provides an overview of the components of a decision support system: the User’s Guide, protocols and documentation form. It addresses commonly utilized protocols, the decisionmaking process, prioritization, critical thinking, documentation, common pitfalls.  It is an introduction to the assessment and decision support  tools of Red Flags, Red Herrings and Rules of Thumb.

Included in the price is:

  • Audio link to ten case studies for analysis & discussion
  • One copy of Adult, Infant-Child, or School Age  telephone triage guidelines, Audiolink to 10 Case studies 


Woman-with-headsetAUDIENCE: RNs and Nurse Practitioners, Physicians*, Residents*

METHODOLOGY: Through the learning methodologies of reading the text, utilizing guidelines, applying critical thinking to written simulations, participants will improve their competency in the use of telephone triage guidelines.

BEHAVIORAL OBJECTIVES: Upon successful completion of this CE course, the participant will be able to:

  • Define the decision support theory underlying the protocol design
  • Proficiently match 20 presenting problems with the correct protocols
  • Utilize a problem solving methodology
  • Describe the correct operation of a Protocol and Documentation Form
  • Form a Working Diagnosis
  • Understand the purpose of three key protocols

MANAGERS Managers can be assured that staff passing the 200-item open-book exam will achieve protocol competency for Adults.

PROVIDER: Sheila Wheeler has been approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, as a Continuing Education Provider #10680 for 5 contact hours.

*PLEASE NOTE: Physicians may take this course, however TeleTriage Systems is not a provider of Medical Continuing Education at this time.


Research and Clinical Decision Making

Research on nurse decisionmaking by Patel and other experts has important implications for the design of these guidelines. The strategies of pattern recognition, rules of thumb and context have been incorporated into all elements of this system — training, guidelines and forms. The goal of this design is to mimic how the brain naturally solves problems in “real world” situations. Because patients are complex and symptom presentations often ill-structured, novel, variable and unique, one needs a system that is correspondingly complex yet flexible, attuned to symptom nuances and subtleties while at the same time providing firm support for decision making. These guidelines are based on the pattern recognition approach, and have these qualities. Furthermore, because telephone triage is a high stakes activity, a well-integrated system is needed to manage the uncertainty and urgency. That system (“an interdependent group of items forming a whole and serving a common purpose”) should be operated by a professional. Thus, the designers of these guidelines intend them to be used by clinicians with substantive decision making experience.


“This book is one of the only books I know of that has pertinent positives and negatives for common chief complaints. I’m a medical student, and I’ve been looking for a book like this for a while. I don’t know anything about nursing protocols, but I will say that it has been a very useful book for coming up with relevant lines of questioning while taking an H and P.  Each chapter is a chief complaint, and the pertinent positives are arranged from most severe/emergent to least. It doesn’t have any confusing flow charts, unlike most other triage books. And, more importantly, it gives you the possible diagnosis for each pertinent positive finding, which a lot of triage books don’t do. I think it’s brilliant.” –  Celsio Gonzalez (link)



  1. Order the Course online through PayPal. Books ship within 7-9 business days.  Please contact Sheila Wheeler at 415.453.8382 if you need a rush order.


  3. You will receive the Post Test via email. 

  4. Read the required reading materials

  5. Complete the post test  and submit it via email

  6. If you pass with 70%, you will receive a Certificate of Completion via email!

  7. If you do not pass with 70%, you will have a chance to retake the exam.  (ALWAYS SAVE A COPY OF YOUR POST TEST)

 5 CE Hours for $85

Includes one copy of Adult, Infant-Child, or School Age  telephone triage guidelines, Audiolink to 10 Case studies. 

Don’t need CE? Order the book only!