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Global critical care: a call to action
journal contributionposted on 2023-02-20, 22:53 authored by AM Crawford, AA Shiferaw, P Ntambwe, AO Milan, K Khalid, R Rubio, F Nizeyimana, F Ariza, AD Mohammed, Tim BakerTim Baker, PR Banguti, F Madzimbamuto
Critical care is underprioritized. A global call to action is needed to increase equitable access to care and the quality of care provided to critically ill patients. Current challenges to effective critical care in resource-constrained settings are many. Estimates of the burden of critical illness are extrapolated from common etiologies, but the true burden remains ill-defined. Measuring the burden of critical illness is epidemiologically challenging but is thought to be increasing. Resources, infrastructure, and training are inadequate. Millions die unnecessarily due to critical illness. Solutions start with the implementation of first-step, patient care fundamentals known as Essential Emergency and Critical Care. Such essential care stands to decrease critical-illness mortality, augment pandemic preparedness, decrease postoperative mortality, and decrease the need for advanced level care. The entire healthcare workforce must be trained in these fundamentals. Additionally, physician and nurse specialists trained in critical care are needed and must be retained as leaders of critical care initiatives, researchers, and teachers. Context-specific research is mandatory to ensure care is appropriate for the patient populations served, not just duplicated from high-resourced settings. Governments must increase healthcare spending and invest in capacity to treat critically ill patients. Advocacy at all levels is needed to achieve universal health coverage for critically ill patients.
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Burden of illnessCritical careCritical illnessGlobal healthICUHumansCritical CareCritical IllnessDelivery of Health CareHealth PersonnelPhysiciansCost of IllnessHealth ServicesClinical Research8.1 Organisation and delivery of services8 Health and social care services researchGeneric health relevance3 Good Health and Well BeingMedical and Health Sciences