Outcomes of a patient safety strategy to decrease the burden of unplanned ICU admissions

S. Ho, I. Shepherd, L. Taylor, J. Preston

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstract


Due to the increasing burden of unplanned ICU admissions on the existing ICU resources, a need to reduce these was identified by a private healthcare organisation.
An education program using simulation to encourage an improvement in identifying the deteriorating patient and initiating a MET call earlier was delivered in efforts to reduce unplanned admissions into ICU.
The program incorporated a pre-simulation tutorial on the MET policy; an orientation to the manikin and surroundings; two clinically based immersive scenarios, debriefing using guided reflection; pre- and post-test surveys and post-scenario and post-program evaluations.
A pre- and post-simulation education intervention audit on MET calls, Code Blue calls and unplanned admissions was carried out. The number of MET calls increased by 167% while the number of Code Blue calls were reduced by 40%. Unplanned ICU admissions increased significantly by 43%.
A post-intervention survey of intensive care personnel who respond to MET and Code Blue calls was also conducted to identify what impact on human and organisation resources occurred.
Post-simulation education data demonstrates nursing staff instigated an increase in MET calls which led to the increased unplanned admissions. Recommendations include: to ultimately reduce the number of unplanned admissions that existing MET criteria be reviewed, in efforts to encourage an earlier patient review. Also that a simulation education program is designed to facilitate both the clinical and contextual attributes required to identify earlier indicators of deterioration and the triggering of an appropriate response.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43
Number of pages1
JournalAustralian Critical Care
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2009
Externally publishedYes
EventAustralia and New Zealand Intensive Care Society Annual Scientific Meeting 2009 - Perth, Australia
Duration: 12 Jun 200912 Jun 2009

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