(4) Each algorithm has a text section which explains the decision blocks in
the flow chart, describes any Level IV (self-care) protocols indicated in the diagram, and
provides any additional information. Refer to this information as needed.
(5) Once the appropriate Levels (I through V) is reached, take the
appropriate steps (refer patient to physician or physician assistant, instruct patient in
self-care protocol, or consult physician or physician assistant regarding referral to
another medical treatment facility.)
Consult local SOP as required, especially if the patient is a basic trainee with
a fever and a possible acute respiratory disease.
Complete the DA Form 5181-R and file.
EXAMPLE OF A PATIENT INTERVIEW USING ALGORITHM-DIRECTED
TROOP MEDICAL CARE SYSTEM
Suppose a patient comes in with a primary complaint of having a common cold.
He could be screened as follows.
a. A "cold" is an ear, nose, and throat complaint. Go to the TD section.
b. One of the algorithms in the ENT section is "cold" (TD-21). Select this
algorithm as a starting point.
c. Check for associated complaints. Upon checking the cold algorithm (figures
5-3 and 5-4), you find a list of associated complaints. Upon questioning the patient, he
says he also has a sore throat, but does not have a sinus problem, ear pain, or
shortness of breath. Since "sore throat" has an asterisk and is in boldface, you must
use the sore throat algorithm instead of the cold algorithm. The "sore throat" (TD-15) is
a more important complaint than the "cold" (TD-21).
d. Go to the "sore throat" algorithm and check for associated complaints. Upon
checking the sore throat algorithm (figures 5-5 and 5-6), you see that the associated
complaint "sinus problems" has an asterisk and is in boldface. Since the patient has
already denied having this complaint and no other complaint has an asterisk or appears
in boldface, the sore throat algorithm is the appropriate algorithm for the patient.
e. Check the vital signs portion of the chart (upper left corner). The instructions
tell you to take the patient's temperature. Take the patient's oral temperature.
Temperatures should be taken orally unless otherwise indicated.