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Providing intensive care

BMJ 1996; 312 doi: (Published 16 March 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:654
  1. D W Ryan
  1. Director of intensive therapy Freeman Hospital, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE7 7DN

    High dependency units and bed registers will help, but not without more resources

    The recent deaths of two severely ill patients being transferred from one hospital to another in search of specialised intensive care have caused public alarm in Britain and have raised questions about the resourcing and organisation of adult and paediatric intensive care.

    The British Paediatric Association has repeatedly pointed to the apparent shortfall in paediatric intensive care beds,1 2 but to seemingly little effect. The fact that major paediatric centres often have to refuse admission negates the association's recommendation that sick children be provided with specialist nursing and medical care. Shann points out that twice as many children per head of population are admitted to intensive care in Australia and the United …

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