Outcome Identification

  • Refers to formulating and documenting measurable, realistic and client-focused goals that will provide the basis for evaluating nursing diagnosis.
  1. To provide individualized care
  2. To promote client participation
  3. To plan care that is realistic and measurable
  4. To allow involvement of support people
Activities during Outcome Identification
  1. Establish client’s goals and outcome criteria
Client Goal
  • Is an educated guess made as a broad statement about what the client’s state or condition will be AFTER the nursing intervention is carried out.
  • Are written to indicate a desired state. They contain action word/verb and a qualifier that indicate the level of performance that needs to be achieved.
    Example of verbs used in client goals:
    • Calculate
    • Classify
    • Communicate
    • Compare
    • Define
    • Demonstrate
    • Describe
    • Construct
    • Contrast
    • Distinguish
    • Draw
    • Explain
    • Express
    • Identify
    • List
    • Name
    • Maintain
    • Perform
    • Particular
    • Practice
    • Recall
    • Recite
    • Record
    • State
    • Use
    • Verbalize
    • Ambulates
  •  *a Qualifier is a description of the parameter or criteria for achieving the goal.


    • Ambulates safely with one-person assistance.
    • Identifies actual & risk environmental hazards.
    • Demonstrates signs of sufficient rest before Surgery.
Goals may be short term or long term
  • Short Term Goal (STG) – can be met in a short period (within days or less than a week)
  • Long Term Goal (LTG) – requires more time (several weeks or months)
  • Outcome Criteria – are specific, measurable, realistic statements goal attainment. They are written in a manner that they answer the questions: who, what actions, under what circumstance, how well and when.
  • Therefore the characteristic of well-stared outcome criteria are:
    • S = smart
    • M = measurement
    • A = attainable
    • R = realistic
    • T = time-framed
Example of Goals and Outcome Criteria

1. Goal – The client will report a decreased anxiety level regarding Surgery.Possible Outcome Criteria:

  • The client discusses fears & concern regarding surgical procedure after client teaching.
  • After client teaching, the client verbalizes decreased anxiety.
  • The client identifies a support system and strategies to use to reduce stress and anxiety related to the surgical experience.

2. Goal – The client will demonstrate safety habits when performing activities of daily living.

Possible Outcome Criteria:

  • Immediately after instruction by the nurse, the client uses call light system for assistance when needs to use the bathroom.
  • The client demonstrates safety practices when dressing and doing personal hygiene.
  • The client uses over-the-bed lights, non-skid slippers when transferring to chair or getting out of bed.
  • The client identifies modification for home safety (removal of throw pillows, installation of hand rails in hallway, better lighting of hallway and stairway), 12 hours after nurse’s instruction about home safety.

3. Goal – The client will mobilize lung secretions.

Possible Outcome Criteria:

  • After teaching session, the client demonstrates proper coughing techniques.
  • The client drinks at least 6 glasses of water per day while in the hospital.
  • The caregiver or significant other demonstrates proper technique of chest physiotherapy including percussion, vibration and postural drainage before discharge.