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ICU Mobility Program Saves $500K in 6 Months

Alexandra Wilson Pecci, for HealthLeaders Media, March 18, 2014

Although the evidence supporting EPM among ICU patients is compelling, Merritt says it represented a huge culture change for nurses who needed to take an hour or more out of their days to get patients up and moving.

"It just wasn't built into their day. It is time consuming," she says. "It just really changes how they have to structure their day. Their time management had to change."

And getting beside nurses onboard with making such a huge change took a lot of work even before the initiative began.

The kick-off event itself included a PowerPoint presentation featuring data and research supporting early progressive mobility, as well as objectives of the new program at Duke Raleigh.

And it wasn't just the nurses who were involved in the kick-off; the physician team, surgeons, rehabilitation services, the executive leadership team, and all the ICU staff participated, too, Merritt says.

"We invited the hospital because we wanted this to be an initiative that everyone learned about because it eventually goes past the intensive care unit walls," she says.

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4 comments on "ICU Mobility Program Saves $500K in 6 Months"


Paula Pless (5/6/2014 at 1:45 PM)
The article does not indicate how the patients were mobilized. In order to make it easier, safer and more efficient SPH equipment needed to be used. What equipment facilitated the early movement of dependent patients? As well as how were patients mobilized while they were improving their functional mobility status? It is critical that we recognize the need for patient lift equipment to mobilize patients who would otherwise in the "old days" be manually lifted. The reason why many patients are not mobilized early on is due to the physicality of manually lifting and the lack of SPH equipment. Quality and length of stay gain a positive impact from SPH programs. I am assuming that this facility has ceiling lifts, Booms and other SPH equipment. I wish the article would have detailed those important details. Could someone respond and indicate the SPH piece of this success story. Paula Pless Director SPH Kaleida Health Western NY

Patti Williams, RN (3/24/2014 at 1:37 PM)
Kudos to the Nurses at Duke Raleigh Hospital!!

Stefani Daniels (3/18/2014 at 6:27 PM)
I don't know if I should be happy or humiliated...as a critical care nurse in the 1970s, getting patients out of bed - especially the fresh CABG patients, was an expectation not an event.