School of Nursing


Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Lynne Sanders


Post-intensive Care Syndrome, PICS, Critical Care, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Patient Diaries, Intensive Care Diary, ICU Diary


Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing


Patients in the ICU are at risk for adverse physiological and psychological symptoms including anxiety, depression and confusion common with post intensive care syndrome. The presence of these symptoms is correlated with poor satisfaction with care and decreased quality of life. This creates stress for patients as well as the families of these patients. This evidence-based practice (EBP) project sought to answer the clinical question: For patients and families in the cardiovascular intensive care unit (CVICU), can participating in an intensive care diary program, when compared to standard of care, decrease the symptoms and incidence of post-intensive care syndrome in patients in the CVICU along with improving family satisfaction with the care and involvement in decision making at discharge from the hospital? Patients and family members in the intervention group received a bound notebook with written suggestions for its use after baseline satisfaction scores were obtained prior to the implementation of the diary program. At the time of the patient's transfer from the CVICU, participants in both groups completed the Family Satisfaction with Care in the Intensive Care Unit survey (FS-ICU-24) as well as a demographic questionnaire. The groups did not differ significantly in age, gender, relationship to the patient, living arrangements, or previous experience as a family member of a patient in an ICU. Although mean scores of the FS-ICU-24 were higher in the intervention group, only the overall satisfaction achieved statistical significance (p=.02). While only five patients were discharged to the medical surgical units, no one experienced symptoms of PICS. This EBP project, while not achieving statistical significance in its results, it did achieve clinical significance, and served as a pilot for a larger, multiunit study.

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