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1.
Intern Med J ; 52(6): 935-943, 2022 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1874422

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Older frail patients are more likely to have timely goals of care (GOC) documentation than non-frail patients. AIMS: To investigate whether timely documentation of GOC within 72 h differed in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic (2020), compared with the pre-COVID-19 era (2019) for older frail patients. METHODS: Multi-site retrospective cohort study was conducted in two public hospitals where all consecutive frail adult patients aged ≥65 years were admitted under medical units for at least 24 h between 1 March 31 and October in 2019 and between 1 March and 31 October 2020 were included. The GOC was derived from electronic records. Frailty status was derived from hospital coding data using hospital frailty risk score (frail ≥5). The primary outcome was the documentation of GOC within 72 h of hospital admission. Secondary outcomes included hospital mortality, rapid response call, intensive care unit admission, prolonged hospital length of stay (≥10 days) and time to the documentation of GOC. RESULTS: The study population comprised 2021 frail patients admitted in 2019 and 1849 admitted in 2020, aged 81.2 and 90.9 years respectively. The proportion of patients with timely GOC was lower in 2020, than 2019 (48.3% (893/1849) vs 54.9% (1109/2021); P = 0.021). After adjusting for confounding factors, patients in 2020 were less likely to receive timely GOC (odds ratio = 0.77; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.68-0.88). Overall time to GOC documentation was longer in 2020 (hazard ratio = 0.86; 95% CI 0.80-0.93). CONCLUSION: Timely GOC documentation occurred less frequently in frail patients during the COVID-19 pandemic than in the pre-COVID-19 era.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Frailty , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Documentation , Frail Elderly , Frailty/diagnosis , Frailty/epidemiology , Humans , Length of Stay , Pandemics , Patient Care Planning , Retrospective Studies
2.
JAMA Netw Open ; 5(5): e2211692, 2022 May 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1838113

ABSTRACT

Importance: Identification of potential indirect outcomes associated with the COVID-19 pandemic in the pediatric population may be essential for understanding the challenges of the current global public health crisis for children and adolescents. Objective: To investigate whether the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak and subsequent effective public health measures in Australia were associated with an increase in admissions to intensive care units (ICUs) of children and adolescents with deliberate self-harm (DSH). Design, Setting, and Participants: This national, multicenter cohort study was conducted using the Australian data subset of the binational Australian and New Zealand Paediatric Intensive Care registry, a collaborative containing more than 200 000 medical records with continuous contributions from all 8 Australian specialist, university-affiliated pediatric ICUs, along with 1 combined neonatal-pediatric ICU and 14 general (adult) ICUs in Australia. The study period encompassed 6.5 years from January 1, 2015, to June 30, 2021. Patients aged 12 to 17 years were included. Data were analyzed from December 2021 through February 2022. Exposures: Any of the following admission diagnoses: ingestion of a drug, ingestion of a nondrug, hanging or strangulation, or self-injury. Main Outcomes and Measures: The primary outcome measure was the temporal trend for national incidence of DSH ICU admissions per 1 million children and adolescents aged 12 to 17 years in Australia. Results: A total of 813 children and adolescents aged 12 to 17 years admitted to ICUs with DSH were identified among 64 145 patients aged 0 to 17 years in the Australian subset of the registry during the study period. Median (IQR) age was 15.1 (14.3-15.8) years; there were 550 (67.7%) female patients, 261 (32.2%) male patients, and 2 (0.2%) patients with indeterminate sex. At the onset of the pandemic, monthly incidence of DSH ICU admissions per million children and adolescents increased from 7.2 admissions in March 2020 to a peak of 11.4 admissions by August 2020, constituting a significant break in the temporal trend (odds ratio of DSH ICU admissions on or after vs before March 2020, 4.84; 95% CI, 1.09 to 21.53; P = .04). This occurred while the rate of all-cause admissions to pediatric ICUs of children and adolescents of all ages (ie, ages 0-17 years) per 1 million children and adolescents decreased from a long-term monthly median (IQR) of 150.9 (138.1-159.8) admissions to 91.7 admissions in April 2020. Conclusions and Relevance: This cohort study found that the coronavirus pandemic in Australia was associated with a significant increase in admissions of children and adolescents to intensive care with DSH.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Self-Injurious Behavior , Adolescent , Adult , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Cohort Studies , Critical Care , Female , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Intensive Care Units, Pediatric , Male , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Self-Injurious Behavior/epidemiology
3.
Crit Care Explor ; 4(1): e0616, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1638086

ABSTRACT

Frailty is often used in clinical decision-making for patients with coronavirus disease 2019, yet studies have found a variable influence of frailty on outcomes in those admitted to the ICU. In this individual patient data meta-analysis, we evaluated the characteristics and outcomes across the range of frailty in patients admitted to ICU with coronavirus disease 2019. DATA SOURCES: We contacted the corresponding authors of 16 eligible studies published between December 1, 2019, and February 28, 2021, reporting on patients with confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 admitted to ICU with a documented Clinical Frailty Scale. STUDY SELECTION: Individual patient data were obtained from seven studies with documented Clinical Frailty Scale were included. We classified patients as nonfrail (Clinical Frailty Scale = 1-4) or frail (Clinical Frailty Scale = 5-8). DATA EXTRACTION: We collected patient demographics, Clinical Frailty Scale score, ICU organ supports, and clinically relevant outcomes (ICU and hospital mortality, ICU and hospital length of stays, and discharge destination). The primary outcome was hospital mortality. DATA SYNTHESIS: Of the 2,001 patients admitted to ICU, 388 (19.4%) were frail. Increasing age and Sequential Organ Failure Assessment score, Clinical Frailty Scale score greater than or equal to 4, use of mechanical ventilation, vasopressors, renal replacement therapy, and hyperlactatemia were risk factors for death in a multivariable analysis. Hospital mortality was higher in patients with frailty (65.2% vs 41.8%; p < 0.001), with adjusted mortality increasing with a rising Clinical Frailty Scale score beyond 3. Younger and nonfrail patients were more likely to receive mechanical ventilation. Patients with frailty spent less time on mechanical ventilation (median days [interquartile range], 9 [5-16] vs 11 d [6-18 d]; p = 0.012) and accounted for only 12.3% of total ICU bed days. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with frailty with coronavirus disease 2019 were commonly admitted to ICU and had greater hospital mortality but spent relatively fewer days in ICU when compared with nonfrail patients. Patients with frailty receiving mechanical ventilation were at greater risk of death than patients without frailty.

4.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-296085

ABSTRACT

Purpose: Frailty is often used in clinical decision-making for patients with COVID-19, yet studies have found variable influence of frailty on outcomes in those admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). In this individual patient data meta-analysis, we evaluated the characteristics, and outcomes of frail patients admitted to ICU with COVID-19. Methods: : We contacted the corresponding authors of sixteen eligible studies published between December 1 st 2019 and February 28 th 2021 reporting the clinical frailty scale (CFS) in patients with confirmed COVID-19 admitted to ICU. Individual patient data was obtained from 7 studies. We classified patients as non-frail (CFS=1-4) or frail (CFS=5-8). The primary outcome was hospital mortality. We also compared the use of mechanical ventilation (MV) and the proportion of ICU bed-days between frailty categories. Results: : Of the 2001 patients admitted to ICU, 388 (19.4%) were frail. Increasing age and sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) score, CFS ≥4, use of MV, vasopressors, renal replacement therapy and hyperlactatemia were risk factors for death in a multivariable analysis. Hospital mortality was higher in frail patients (65.2% vs. 41.8%;p<0.001), with adjusted mortality increasing with a rising CFS score beyond 3. Younger and non-frail patients were more likely to receive MV. Frail patients spent less time on MV (median days [IQR] 9 [5-16] vs. 11 [6-18];p=0.012) and accounted for only 12.3% of total ICU bed-days. Conclusion: Frail patients with COVID-19 were commonly admitted to ICU and had greater hospital mortality but spent relatively fewer days in ICU when compared with non-frail patients. Frail patients receiving MV were at greater risk of death than non-frail patients. Systematic review registration: Registration protocol in PROSPERO (CRD42020224255).

5.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 6266, 2021 11 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493105

ABSTRACT

During 2020, Victoria was the Australian state hardest hit by COVID-19, but was successful in controlling its second wave through aggressive policy interventions. We calibrated a detailed compartmental model of Victoria's second wave to multiple geographically-structured epidemic time-series indicators. We achieved a good fit overall and for individual health services through a combination of time-varying processes, including case detection, population mobility, school closures, physical distancing and face covering usage. Estimates of the risk of death in those aged ≥75 and of hospitalisation were higher than international estimates, reflecting concentration of cases in high-risk settings. We estimated significant effects for each of the calibrated time-varying processes, with estimates for the individual-level effect of physical distancing of 37.4% (95%CrI 7.2-56.4%) and of face coverings of 45.9% (95%CrI 32.9-55.6%). That the multi-faceted interventions led to the dramatic reversal in the epidemic trajectory is supported by our results, with face coverings likely particularly important.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Epidemics , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/transmission , Hospitalization , Humans , Middle Aged , Models, Theoretical , Physical Distancing , SARS-CoV-2 , Schools , Victoria , Young Adult
6.
Med J Aust ; 215(11): 513-517, 2021 12 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1468685

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To describe the short term ability of Australian intensive care units (ICUs) to increase capacity in response to heightened demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. DESIGN: Survey of ICU directors or delegated senior clinicians (disseminated 30 August 2021), supplemented by Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society (ANZICS) registry data. SETTING: All 194 public and private Australian ICUs. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Numbers of currently available and potentially available ICU beds in case of a surge; available levels of ICU-relevant equipment and staff. RESULTS: All 194 ICUs responded to the survey. The total number of currently open staffed ICU beds was 2183. This was 195 fewer (8.2%) than in 2020; the decline was greater for rural/regional (18%) and private ICUs (18%). The reported maximal ICU bed capacity (5623) included 813 additional physical ICU bed spaces and 2627 in surge areas outside ICUs. The number of available ventilators (7196) exceeded the maximum number of ICU beds. The reported number of available additional nursing staff would facilitate the immediate opening of 383 additional physical ICU beds (47%), but not the additional bed spaces outside ICUs. CONCLUSIONS: The number of currently available staffed ICU beds is lower than in 2020. Equipment shortfalls have been remediated, with sufficient ventilators to equip every ICU bed. ICU capacity can be increased in response to demand, but is constrained by the availability of appropriately trained staff. Fewer than half the potentially additional physical ICU beds could be opened with currently available staff numbers while maintaining pre-pandemic models of care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Hospital Bed Capacity , Intensive Care Units/organization & administration , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Equipment and Supplies, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Equipment and Supplies, Hospital/supply & distribution , Humans , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , New Zealand/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Registries/statistics & numerical data
10.
PLoS One ; 16(5): e0251523, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1219018

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: This paper aimed to describe the airway practices of intensive care units (ICUs) in Australia and New Zealand specific to patients presenting with COVID-19 and to inform whether consistent clinical practice was achieved. Specific clinical airway guidelines were endorsed in March 2020 by the Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society (ANZICS) and College of Intensive Care Medicine (CICM). METHODS AND FINDINGS: Prospective, structured questionnaire for all ICU directors in Australia and New Zealand was completed by 69 ICU directors after email invitation from ANZICS. The online questionnaire was accessible for three weeks during September 2020 and analysed by cloud-based software. Basic ICU demographics (private or public, metropolitan or rural) and location, purchasing, airway management practices, guideline uptake, checklist and cognitive aid use and staff training relevant to airway management during the COVID-19 pandemic were the main outcome measures. The 69 ICU directors reported significant simulation-based inter-professional airway training of staff (97%), and use of video laryngoscopy (94%), intubation checklists (94%), cognitive aids (83%) and PPE "spotters" (89%) during the airway management of patients with COVID-19. Tracheal intubation was almost always performed by a Specialist (97% of ICUs), who was more likely to be an intensivist than an anaesthetist (61% vs 36%). There was a more frequent adoption of specific airway guidelines for the management of COVID-19 patients in public ICUs (94% vs 71%) and reliance on specialist intensivists to perform intubations in private ICUs (92% vs 53%). CONCLUSION: There was a high uptake of a standardised approach to airway management in COVID-19 patients in ICUs in Australia and New Zealand, likely due to endorsement of national guidelines.


Subject(s)
Airway Management , COVID-19/epidemiology , Airway Management/statistics & numerical data , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Guidelines as Topic , Humans , Intensive Care Units , New Zealand/epidemiology , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Physician Executives/psychology , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Surveys and Questionnaires
11.
Chest ; 160(2): 538-548, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1202982

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unprecedented demand for ICUs, with the need to triage admissions along with the development of ICU triage criteria. However, how these criteria relate to outcomes in patients already admitted to the ICU is unknown, as is the incremental ICU capacity that triage of these patients might create given existing admission practices. RESEARCH QUESTION: What is the short- and long-term survival of low- vs high-priority patients for ICU admission according to current pandemic triage criteria? STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: This study analyzed prospectively collected registry data (2007-2018) in 23 ICUs in Victoria, Australia, with probabilistic linkage with death registries. After excluding elective surgery, admissions were stratified according to existing ICU triage protocol prioritization as low (age ≥ 85 years, or severe chronic illness, or Sequential Organ Failure Assessment [SOFA] score = 0 or ≥ 12), medium (SOFA score = 8-11) or high (SOFA score = 1-7) priority. The primary outcome was long-term survival. Secondary outcomes were in-hospital mortality, ICU length of stay (LOS) and bed-day usage. RESULTS: This study examined 126,687 ICU admissions. After 5 years of follow-up, 1,093 of 3,296 (33%; 95% CI, 32-34) of "low-priority" patients aged ≥ 85 years or with severe chronic illness and 86 of 332 (26%; 95% CI, 24-28) with a SOFA score ≥ 12 were still alive. Sixty-three of 290 (22%; 95% CI, 17-27) of patients in these groups followed up for 10 years were still alive. Together, low-priority patients accounted for 27% of all ICU bed-days and had lower in-hospital mortality (22%) than the high-priority patients (28%). Among nonsurvivors, low-priority admissions had shorter ICU LOS than medium- or high-priority admissions. INTERPRETATION: Current SOFA score or age or severe comorbidity-based ICU pandemic triage protocols exclude patients with a close to 80% hospital survival, a > 30% five-year survival, and 27% of ICU bed-day use. These findings imply the need for stronger evidence-based ICU triage protocols.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Critical Illness/classification , Critical Illness/mortality , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , Triage/standards , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Cohort Studies , Female , Hospital Mortality , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , Survival Rate , Time Factors
12.
Crit Care ; 25(1): 106, 2021 03 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1136238

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused unprecedented pressure on healthcare system globally. Lack of high-quality evidence on the respiratory management of COVID-19-related acute respiratory failure (C-ARF) has resulted in wide variation in clinical practice. METHODS: Using a Delphi process, an international panel of 39 experts developed clinical practice statements on the respiratory management of C-ARF in areas where evidence is absent or limited. Agreement was defined as achieved when > 70% experts voted for a given option on the Likert scale statement or > 80% voted for a particular option in multiple-choice questions. Stability was assessed between the two concluding rounds for each statement, using the non-parametric Chi-square (χ2) test (p < 0·05 was considered as unstable). RESULTS: Agreement was achieved for 27 (73%) management strategies which were then used to develop expert clinical practice statements. Experts agreed that COVID-19-related acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is clinically similar to other forms of ARDS. The Delphi process yielded strong suggestions for use of systemic corticosteroids for critical COVID-19; awake self-proning to improve oxygenation and high flow nasal oxygen to potentially reduce tracheal intubation; non-invasive ventilation for patients with mixed hypoxemic-hypercapnic respiratory failure; tracheal intubation for poor mentation, hemodynamic instability or severe hypoxemia; closed suction systems; lung protective ventilation; prone ventilation (for 16-24 h per day) to improve oxygenation; neuromuscular blocking agents for patient-ventilator dyssynchrony; avoiding delay in extubation for the risk of reintubation; and similar timing of tracheostomy as in non-COVID-19 patients. There was no agreement on positive end expiratory pressure titration or the choice of personal protective equipment. CONCLUSION: Using a Delphi method, an agreement among experts was reached for 27 statements from which 20 expert clinical practice statements were derived on the respiratory management of C-ARF, addressing important decisions for patient management in areas where evidence is either absent or limited. TRIAL REGISTRATION: The study was registered with Clinical trials.gov Identifier: NCT04534569.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Consensus , Delphi Technique , Respiratory Insufficiency/therapy , Respiratory Insufficiency/virology , Humans
13.
Ann Am Thorac Soc ; 18(8): 1380-1389, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-999862

ABSTRACT

Rationale: Both 2009 pandemic influenza A (H1N1) and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) are transmitted by respiratory secretions and in severe cases result in a viral pneumonitis, requiring intensive care unit (ICU) admission. However, no studies have compared the clinical characteristics and outcomes of such patients. Objectives: To report and compare the demographic characteristics, treatments, use of critical care resources, and outcomes of patients admitted to an Australian ICU with H1N1 influenza during the winter of 2009, and SARS-CoV-2 during the winter of 2020. Methods: This was a multicenter project, using national data from previous and ongoing epidemiological studies concerning severe acute respiratory infections in Australia. All ICUs admitting patients with H1N1 or coronavirus disease (COVID-19) were included and contributed data. We compared clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients with H1N1 admitted to ICU in the winter of 2009 versus patients with COVID-19 admitted to ICU in the winter of 2020. The primary outcome was in-hospital mortality. Potential years of life lost (PYLL) were calculated according to sex-adjusted life expectancy in Australia. Results: Across the two epochs, 861 patients were admitted to ICUs; 236 (27.4%) with COVID-19 and 625 (72.6%) with H1N1 influenza. The number of ICU admissions and bed-days occupied were higher with 2009 H1N1 influenza. Patients with COVID-19 were older, more often male and overweight, and had lower Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II scores at ICU admission. The highest age-specific incidence of ICU admission was among infants (0-1 yr of age) for H1N1, and among the elderly (≥65 yr) for COVID-19. Unadjusted in-hospital mortality was similar (11.5% in COVID-19 vs. 16.1% in H1N1; odds ratio, 0.68 [95% confidence interval (95% CI), 0.42-1.06]; P = 0.10). The PYLL was greater with H1N1 influenza than with COVID-19 at 154.1 (95% CI, 148.7-159.4) versus 13.6 (95% CI, 12.2-15.1) PYLL per million inhabitants. Conclusions: In comparison with 2009 H1N1 influenza, COVID-19 admissions overwinter in Australia resulted in fewer ICU admissions, and lower bed-day occupancy. Crude in-hospital mortality was similar, but because of demographic differences in affected patients, deaths due to 2009 H1N1 influenza led to an 11-fold increase in the number of PYLL in critically ill patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype , Influenza, Human , Aged , Australia/epidemiology , Critical Care , Critical Illness , Humans , Infant , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Influenza, Human/therapy , Intensive Care Units , Male , SARS-CoV-2
15.
Intensive Care Med ; 46(8): 1597-1599, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-824222
16.
Br J Anaesth ; 125(5): 730-738, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-739780

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: A threshold Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS) of 5 (indicating mild frailty) has been proposed to guide ICU admission for UK patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pneumonia. However, the impact of frailty on mortality with (non-COVID-19) pneumonia in critical illness is unknown. We examined the triage utility of the CFS in patients with pneumonia requiring ICU. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of adult patients admitted with pneumonia to 170 ICUs in Australia and New Zealand from January 1, 2018 to September 31, 2019. We classified patients as: non-frail (CFS 1-4) frail (CFS 5-8), mild/moderately frail (CFS 5-6),and severe/very severely frail (CFS 7-8). We evaluated mortality (primary outcome) adjusting for site, age, sex, mechanical ventilation, pneumonia type and illness severity. We also compared the proportion of ICU bed-days occupied between frailty categories. RESULTS: 1852/5607 (33%) patients were classified as frail, including1291/3056 (42%) of patients aged >65 yr, who would potentially be excluded from ICU admission under UK-based COVID-19 triage guidelines. Only severe/very severe frailty scores were associated with mortality (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] for CFS=7: 3.2; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.3-7.8; CFS=8 [aOR: 7.2; 95% CI: 2.6-20.0]). These patients accounted for 7% of ICU bed days. Vulnerability (CFS=4) and mild frailty (CFS=5) were associated with a similar mortality risk (CFS=4 [OR: 1.6; 95% CI: 0.7-3.8]; CFS=5 [OR: 1.6; 95% CI: 0.7-3.9]). CONCLUSIONS: Patients with severe and very severe frailty account for relatively few ICU bed days as a result of pneumonia, whilst adjusted mortality analysis indicated little difference in risk between patients in vulnerable, mild, and moderate frailty categories. These data do not support CFS ≥5 to guide ICU admission for pneumonia.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Frail Elderly/statistics & numerical data , Geriatric Assessment/statistics & numerical data , Patient Outcome Assessment , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Aged , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Cohort Studies , Critical Illness , Female , Geriatric Assessment/methods , Humans , Length of Stay , Male , Middle Aged , New Zealand/epidemiology , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Med J Aust ; 212(10): 463-467, 2020 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-72022

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To assess the capacity of intensive care units (ICUs) in Australia to respond to the expected increase in demand associated with COVID-19. DESIGN: Analysis of Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society (ANZICS) registry data, supplemented by an ICU surge capability survey and veterinary facilities survey (both March 2020). SETTINGS: All Australian ICUs and veterinary facilities. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Baseline numbers of ICU beds, ventilators, dialysis machines, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machines, intravenous infusion pumps, and staff (senior medical staff, registered nurses); incremental capability to increase capacity (surge) by increasing ICU bed numbers; ventilator-to-bed ratios; number of ventilators in veterinary facilities. RESULTS: The 191 ICUs in Australia provide 2378 intensive care beds during baseline activity (9.3 ICU beds per 100 000 population). Of the 175 ICUs that responded to the surge survey (with 2228 intensive care beds), a maximal surge would add an additional 4258 intensive care beds (191% increase) and 2631 invasive ventilators (120% increase). This surge would require additional staffing of as many as 4092 senior doctors (245% increase over baseline) and 42 720 registered ICU nurses (269% increase over baseline). An additional 188 ventilators are available in veterinary facilities, including 179 human model ventilators. CONCLUSIONS: The directors of Australian ICUs report that intensive care bed capacity could be near tripled in response to the expected increase in demand caused by COVID-19. But maximal surge in bed numbers could be hampered by a shortfall in invasive ventilators and would also require a large increase in clinician and nursing staff numbers.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Hospital Bed Capacity , Intensive Care Units/supply & distribution , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Surge Capacity/trends , Ventilators, Mechanical/supply & distribution , Australia/epidemiology , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2
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