Features  |   November 2017
The Post-ICU Clinic: Implications for Critical Care Medicine and the Health Care System
Author Affiliations
  • A. Joseph Layon, M.D., FACP
    Committee on Critical Care Medicine
Article Information
Critical Care / Features
Features   |   November 2017
The Post-ICU Clinic: Implications for Critical Care Medicine and the Health Care System
ASA Monitor 11 2017, Vol.81, 10-12.
ASA Monitor 11 2017, Vol.81, 10-12.
It is estimated that up to 50 percent of ICU survivors are at risk for long-term physical, cognitive, and/or behavioral health issues after ICU and hospital discharge.1 -5  This constellation of difficulties is called post-intensive care syndrome (PICS). In addition to the direct impact on ICU survivors, PICS has a financial and operational impact on health care delivery systems6 -8  as well as a significant and often negative impact on the caregivers and families of ICU survivors.9 -11 
In recognition of PICS and its effects on a substantial portion of ICU survivors, their families and the health care systems that care for them, post-ICU survivor clinics have come into existence in many countries. These clinics seek to study the needs and outcomes of ICU survivors, with the dual goals of improving the long-term outcomes of ICU survivors while achieving these improved outcomes in an operationally efficient and cost-effective manner. To date, the impact of ICU survivor clinics has been variable and difficult to assess due to a variety of factors: heterogeneity of outcomes measures, heterogeneity of the tools used to measure outcomes of interest, lack of validation for many of the tools being used to assess quality of life and behavioral health measures in the ICU survivor population, and heterogeneity of staffing and interventions deployed in ICU survivor clinics.12 -15 
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