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Department Discovery-July: ICU

Department Discovery-July: ICU

The July Department Discovery shines a light on Campbell County Health's Intensive Care Unit, or the ICU.

As you may know, an ICU cares for patients with severe and life-threatening illnesses or injuries who require close monitoring and support in order to get well. CCMH's ICU is a nine-bed unit that cares for patients from very young infants to the elderly. The ICU in Gillette is staffed with 16 highly trained nurses who specialize in caring for critically ill patients—in fact, eight of the nurses have national critical care certifications, Wound Care (WCC) certifications and more. There are also three unit secretaries who are responsible for assisting with input of Physician orders, coordinating test, greeting all visitors to the ICU, ordering supplies, and much more.

"I'm proud to say that 55 percent of the staff has been in the ICU for over 10 years," says Sherry Bailey, RN, ICU manager. "We are not only committed to our department, but to our health system. There are 14 ICU team members who are involved with CCH quality projects, serve on a team either departmental or hospital wide, or lead a hospital team." Now that's dedication to patient care.

The ICU has been busy this year focusing on ways to improve their already high patient care scores even more—according to HealthStreams, a system that manages Campbell County Health's patient satisfaction survey process, the ICU scores high in nurse communication with patients, medication education, discharge information as well as pain control. Staff is currently leading a project that will help them make patient-necessary supplies more convenient for them, as well as take them less time to gather and replace.

The ICU is also one area where technology helps improve patient outcomes. "The ICU at CCMH is partnered with an eICU through Avera Health Care in South Dakota," says Sherry.

The eICU® Program connects CCMH to the services of Avera eICU® CARE and its staff of dedicated core of intensivists and critical care nurses located at Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Care Center in Sioux Falls, SD. This system helps CCMH physicians and nurses monitor patients 24 hours a day with real-time cameras in the rooms that are only turned on when needed. Patient information—such as vital signs, medications and test results—is sent over secure, high-speed data lines so it can be continuously analyzed by computers and physicians. This helps bring attention to the slightest changes in patient conditions, allowing for early intervention before significant problems may occur.

"This provides an extra level of specialized care for critical care patients—and at no added cost to the patient," says Sherry.

A big round of applause to the talented ICU staff! Thank you for all that you do for CCH and for helping to keep our community healthy.

Note: This photo of ICU staff was taken earlier in the year; some staff members may be missing.