Critical Care Medicine
Our intensive care unit (ICU) features the latest in technology and a staff of caring providers dedicated to getting our patients on the road to recovery.
We are very serious in implementing infection control procedures throughout the hospital to protect the health of each of our patients. Please wash or use sanitizer gel on your hands before and after visiting a patient. Sanitizer gel is located in each patient room by the door, at the entrance of the hospital and throughout the hospital. Always check with the nurse before entering an isolation room.
Communication and Contact
Please designate one person to receive information and communicate it to the other family members. Any questions/inquiries can be referred to the nurse in charge of the care of the patient.
In the interest of a specific patient, the managing nurse may make an exception to this policy/guideline, depending on the patient's condition. This change would be subject to change and modification by the attending physician caring for the patient.
Visitation by the immediate family is encouraged to support the patient during his or her stay in the ICU. We believe involvement of the family at all stages of care is at the heart of the healing process. Family visitation is important, but in the best interest of the patient, please be aware that visits are regulated by ICU staff. Visitors may be asked to leave the ICU at any time so that staff may provide specific patient care. This can include medical procedures and/or patient emergencies.
Only two people at a time may visit an ICU patient because of room size, patient care equipment and ongoing patient care needs. One family member will be allowed to stay with the patient overnight if it is determined by the managing nurse that it will benefit the patient. Persons who are ill are asked not to visit the hospital. They can call the ICU and talk to the patient on the ICU phone if the patient is available. Children under the age of 12 are not allowed to visit any patients in the ICU because of their reduced immunities and common childhood illnesses.
Our ICU waiting room must accommodate the families of all of our patients, and we want to make sure that all families have a chance to be comfortable. Space is limited, and because of fire codes, we must ask that only two visitors per patient be in the ICU waiting area at any one time. Special arrangements can be made depending on your situation.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much time may I spend with my loved one?
Our No. 1 priority is the well-being of our patients and their families. Visits are limited, depending on the condition of the patient and his or her care needs. The more critical the patient, the shorter the visit should be. A good rule of thumb would be to limit each visit to 10 minutes, as long as there are not multiple visitors.
Who is able to visit?
Immediate adult family members may visit the patient. Children age 12 and older may visit with their parent's permission. We do not encourage visits from young children because of the risk of infection to both them and to the patient. Seeing a loved one attached to ICU equipment may be traumatizing for young children.
I heard alarms, but no one responded. Why?
Unlike on TV, not all alarms are bad. Some indicate that the patient moved or coughed. Other alarms are set to notify the nurse of important information. If the alarm is serious, you can expect to be asked to leave the ICU and allow the critical care team to respond. Please go to the waiting room, where someone will contact you and keep you informed.
Why aren't there phones in the patient rooms?
Patients in the ICU need a protected and safe environment in which to heal. This is the reason for limiting normal activities such as phone calls and visitors. Everything is monitored to assist the patient in healing.
Are flowers and balloons allowed?
No. Despite their beauty, live plants and flowers can carry potentially infectious agents to which your loved one should not be exposed. Latex balloons pose a serious allergenic risk and are not allowed anywhere in the hospital. We do encourage cards, pictures, banners, silk flowers and stuffed animals. Please remember our rooms are small and the staff will need space to care for your loved one.