Post intensive care clinic: a new service for Armadale patients

Former ICU patient Nola Miles with ICU multidisciplinary team
Former ICU patient Nola Miles with the ICU multidisciplinary team.
October 2, 2018

A new clinic offering support to Intensive Care Unit (ICU) patients after discharge from hospital started today at Armadale Hospital. This innovative new clinic aims to help patients transition from the ICU back to their everyday life and community.

The clinic was developed by a multidisciplinary team including Nurse Unit Manager Denver Prince, Physiotherapists Mark Palermo and Robin Fowler and Drs Kieran Lennon, Jacqui Donnelly and David Blythe. It aims to provide comprehensive multidisciplinary care, allowing patients to be seen by an ICU doctor, nurse and physiotherapist in the same visit.

Dr Blythe explains the concept for the clinic came from clinicians in the ICU asking “how can we do something to more to help our patients?”.

“The logical step was to provide specialised follow-up care to ensure their rehabilitation is going as planned and to address any concerns they may have after discharge,” Dr Blythe said.

“Critical care follow-up clinics are well established internationally, with evidence showing that post ICU clinics are highly valued by patients.”

As part of the post ICU clinic at Armadale, patients return to the hospital six weeks after their discharge. They can expect a functional assessment, a review of medication for ongoing care, and the opportunity to get a better understanding of their time in ICU. Any concerns with ongoing physical or mental health issues will be managed through liaison with their GP or other health professionals including community services.

Acting Senior Lead Physiotherapist Robin Fowler says it’s wonderful to help make a positive impact in a patient’s recovery.

“It’s a milestone when a patient survives a severe critical illness and is able to go home, but many patients are not prepared or know what to expect. We hope our new clinic will be the support and care they need to make their recovery process easier.