Beaumont Hospital

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Intensive Care Unit

Welcome to the General Intensive Care Unit

In the General ICU we care for patients who need 1:1 nursing care. Your relative may need to be admitted to the ICU for various reasons, these include:

  • For medications to support their blood pressure in order to improve their circulation and send blood to vital organs.
  • For support with their breathing from the ventilator. This could be due to a respiratory condition or infection, or because they are not awake enough to breath from themselves.
  • We are a national referral centre for people who have suffered a severe head injury, maybe in an accident or a fall.
  • We manage patients who need continuous dialysis over 24hrs.
  • After a major surgery.

Usually patients in the ICU are complex and may have a number of medical concerns at the same time. We try our best to explain these to you when you visit.

We ask that only immediate family members visit, and only two people will be able to visit at any time.

Phone Numbers

The unit can be contacted on the following numbers:

01 809 2494         /              01 809 3152         /              01 809 3150

Please nominate one member of your family to make enquires. This allows the nursing staff to stay with your relative and continue to care for them.

Avoid calls between 7.30am and 8am, and 8pm and 8.40pm as this is handover/report time.

The ICU is located on the Lower Ground Floor. When you arrive at the unit, there is a phone which you pick up to find out if your relative is ready for a visitor. If so, you will be buzzed in. On your first visit, we will come out to meet you and show you the way.

 

Visiting Times

1pm – 15.30 pm & from 5pm – 8pm

In certain circumstances, visiting can be arranged outside of these hours. We ask that you arrange this in advance with the manager on duty.

 

Visiting is restricted to these times so to allow your relative to have ample time to be cared for and also to rest. The general routine in the morning is for nurses to complete their assessment and arrange your relatives care for the day. Your relative will also be seen by a specialist critical care physiotherapist, their primary team and the ICU team and the microbiology team. Chest x-rays are routinely taken in the morning in the ICU also. Visiting is scheduled to begin at 1pm in order to allow this morning activity to take place.

Quiet Time 3.30pm – 5pm.

Our objective in ICU is to provide high quality care to the critically ill patients and the atmosphere in which to recuperate. We have introduced a designated period of quiet time in our ICU from 3.30pm to 5pm. It is a period of reduced controllable noise and light. Research has shown many advantages in allowing the patient to physically and mentally rest. The main aim of quiet time is encouraging patients to get adequate rest or sleep by reducing unnecessary interventions, decreasing the environmental noise and by restricted visiting (except in emergency cases). However, during this time we don't say 'no' to patient admissions, discharges and emergency tests or treatments/procedures.

By providing the quiet time we will provide a healing environment for the critically ill patients.

General Visiting Guide

  • At times you may not be able to visit during the above times. This could be if your relative needs to have a procedure during these hours, or go for a scan. Or if an emergency is happening in the unit.
  • Use the phone to check if your relative is ready for a visitor. This protects their privacy and dignity as they may be exposed for a procedure or test.
  • Use the alcohol hand gel provided on your way into and leaving the unit.
  • Nursing staff will guide you on what your relative needs. Usually only a toilet bag is needed initially, with wash gel, deodorant, perfume etc.
  • Take turns. Your relative may be with us for a while, so please take time to rest yourself. You make be able to take turns with other members of your family. This allows you and your relative time to rest and recover during a very stressful time.
  • Speak to the nurse at the bedside if you have any concerns. You can also ask for a family meeting with the medical team, to speak with the manager on duty, to speak with the social worker, or for a visit from the chaplaincy department. Let us know what you need and how we can help.
  • Children are welcome in the unit. However, it can be a very frightening time for young children and teenagers so please speak with us in advance. By letting us know, we can ensure that we schedule an appropriate time to visit and are there to support the young visitor. We have some small books to help their understanding of the ICU, just ask us if you need a copy.
  • Photographs, videos and mobile phones are not permitted in the unit.