Mercy Gilbert's Intensive Care Unit (ICU) offers specialized care and monitoring for our patients with any potentially life-threatening medical, surgical or cardiac condition requiring continuous monitoring, or a more intensive nurse-to-patient ratio. Our compassionate and highly trained ICU team is made up of registered nurses, patient care technicians, monitor technicians, hospitalists, intensivists and other healthcare providers specializing in critical care. They are committed to helping their patients heal, body, mind and spirit.
We understand having a loved one in the ICU can be very stressful and overwhelming. When you visit, here are a few things you and your family can do to help:
- Appoint a family spokesperson or two, someone who will be in regular contact with your loved one's nurses and who can, in turn, inform the rest of the family of her condition, and any changes in her treatment plan, and so forth.
- Stay ahead of your loved one's pain. Often a family member can read a patient's unspoken cues better than the nurses. Help your loved one stay ahead of her pain by encouraging them to ask for pain medications before they are in pain.
- Make sure your loved one stays in bed if they are restricted to bed rest. The vast majority of patient injuries in hospitals are due to patients trying to get out of bed for restroom visits or other reasons. If your loved one needs to get out of bed, call the nurse.
- If your loved one will be in the hospital for a lengthy stay, bring some comforts of home, such as a favorite pillow or blanket, framed pictures, music and books they enjoy.
- Check with the nurse to see if family members can help your loved one with hygiene such as hair combing, putting on lotion, and so forth. This can help provide a comforting touch, as well as helping your loved one feel better.
- Try to keep visits to two people at a time and for fairly short visits. Your loved one needs to rest, and if they feel the need to entertain guests, they won't get that rest.
- Lastly, your family members need to remember to take care of themselves as well. It can be exhausting to have a loved one in the hospital, let alone in the ICU. But you will be best equipped to help your loved one if you are well rested and healthy.
Visiting the ICU
Patients in the ICU often have compromised immune systems. Although it may be difficult, if you are not feeling well it is important to postpone visiting. Everyone who enters the ICU must wash their hands. The ICU is open from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., and from 8 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. From 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. each day our doctors and nurses conduct patient care meetings and we ask you stay inside of your loved ones room during this time for privacy reasons. For your loved one's comfort, we suggest only two visitors at a time in the room. Limitations may exist for children under the age of 14. Please check with your loved one's nurse for special considerations. For more information, please call (480) 728-7348.