Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Burden of futile care in ICU studied: Patients waiting for care affected negatively

Date:
October 28, 2013
Source:
American College of Chest Physicians
Summary:
Researchers studied the opportunity costs of providing futile care to patients in the ICU, finding that care was delayed or compromised for waiting patients when futile care was being provided in a full ICU. Futile treatment was identified by critical care specialists as ICU care from which patients could never receive a benefit, prolonged the dying process, or where the burdens far outweighed the benefits.

Researchers at UCLA studied the opportunity costs of providing futile care to patients in the ICU, finding that care was delayed or compromised for waiting patients when futile care was being provided in a full ICU. Futile treatment was identified by critical care specialists as ICU care from which patients could never receive a benefit, prolonged the dying process, or where the burdens far outweighed the benefits.

Related Articles


On a daily basis for a period of 3 months, researchers surveyed critical care physicians in five ICUs in one health-care system to identify patients receiving futile treatment. On days when the ICU was full and when there was at least one patient in the unit receiving futile treatment, they evaluated the number of patients who had to wait in the ED for more than 4 hours before being transferred to the ICU, as well as the number of patients who waited for more than one day to be transferred to the ICU from outside hospitals.

During the study, 36 critical care specialists made 6,916 assessments on 1,136 patients. There were 464 daily assessments of futile treatment (123 patients, 11% of all patients). There were 72 days when the ICU was full and had at least one patient receiving futile treatment. During those days, 33 patients waited in the ED for over 4 hours after it was determined that they required ICU-level care. Of the 22 patients who had to wait for more than one day to be transferred from an outside hospital, nine spent 16 days waiting when the ICU was full and contained at least one patient who was receiving futile treatment. Of the 37 patients who never transferred from an outside hospital, two died while waiting.

"We found that the burdens of futile treatment extend beyond the patients receiving that treatment," said Thanh Huynh, MD, a specialist in critical care medicine and pulmonology at UCLA. "We need to explore new ways to reorient treatment so that appropriate treatment is available to all patients."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American College of Chest Physicians. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American College of Chest Physicians. "Burden of futile care in ICU studied: Patients waiting for care affected negatively." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131028101259.htm>.
American College of Chest Physicians. (2013, October 28). Burden of futile care in ICU studied: Patients waiting for care affected negatively. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131028101259.htm
American College of Chest Physicians. "Burden of futile care in ICU studied: Patients waiting for care affected negatively." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131028101259.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins