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Improving family-centered outcomes is a priority in oncologic critical care. As part of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Collaborative, we implemented patient- and family-centered initiatives in a comprehensive cancer center.
A multidisciplinary team was created to implement the initiatives. We instituted an open visitation policy (OVP) that revamped the use of the two-way communication boards and enhanced the waiting room experience by hosting ICU family-centered events. To assess the initiatives’ effects, we carried out pre-intervention (PRE) and post-intervention (POST) family/caregiver and ICU practitioner surveys.
A total of 159 (PRE = 79, POST = 80) family members and 147 (PRE = 95, POST = 52) ICU practitioners participated. Regarding the decision-making process, family members felt more included (40.5% vs. 68.8%, p < 0.001) and more supported (29.1% vs. 48.8%, p = 0.011) after the implementation of the initiatives. The caregivers also felt more control over the decision-making process in the POST survey (34.2% vs. 56.3%, p = 0.005). Although 33% of the ICU staff considered OVP was beneficial for the ICU, 41% disagreed and 26% were neutral. Only half of them responded that OVP was beneficial for patients and 63% agreed that OVP was beneficial for families. Half of the practitioners agreed that OVP resulted in additional work for staff.
Significance of results
Our project effectively promoted patient- and family-centered care. The families expressed satisfaction with the communication of information and the decision-making process. However, the ICU staff felt that the initiatives increased their work load. Further research is needed to understand whether making this project universal or introducing additional novel practices would significantly benefit patients admitted to the ICU and their family.
In 2002, the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH; Chicago, Illinois) convened the Chicago-Area Neonatal MRSA Working Group (CANMWG) to discuss and compare approaches aimed at control of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). To better understand these issues on a regional level, the CDPH and the Evanston Department of Health and Human Services (EDHHS; Evanston, Illinois) began an investigation.
Survey to collect demographic, clinical, microbiologic, and epidemiologic data on individual cases and clusters of MRSA infection; an additional survey collected data on infection control practices.
Level III NICUs at Chicago-area hospitals.
Neonates and healthcare workers associated with the level III NICUs.
From June 2001 through September 2002, the participating hospitals reported all clusters of MRSA infection in their respective level III NICUs to the CDPH and the EDHHS.
Thirteen clusters of MRSA infection were detected in level III NICUs, and 149 MRSA-positive infants were reported. Infection control surveys showed that hospitals took different approaches for controlling MRSA colonization and infection in NICUs.
The CANMWG developed recommendations for the prevention and control of MRSA colonization and infection in the NICU and agreed that recommendations should expand to include future data generated by further studies. Continuing partnerships between hospital infection control personnel and public health professionals will be crucial in honing appropriate guidelines for effective approaches to the management and control of MRSA colonization and infection in NICUs.
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