Critical care dependency tool: Monitoring the changes

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Journal Article
Australian Critical Care, 2001, 14 (2), pp. 56 - 63
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The critical care patient dependency system (CCPD) is a factorial patient acuity system developed in 1993 by Ferguson and Harris-Ingall1 for use in adult critical care areas. It was developed specifically to help determine Australian nursing cost weights and was utilised to collect data from nine Sydney critical care units from October 1992 until May 1993. The St. George Hospital (SGH) general intensive care unit, one of the nine participating hospitals, continues to use and collect data with the CCPD. This paper describes the instrument and compares data on Australian national diagnosis related groups (ANDRGs), collected during the original study, to ANDRG information on the critical care population 3 and 6 years later. In addition, the paper examines and compares the demographics of the SGH critical care patient population, patient acuity (based upon CCPD patient scores) and intensive care nursing clinical practices collected over a 3 month period in 1996 and again in 1999. Demographic and patient acuity data for SGH in 1993 are unavailable and so comparisons were unable to be made. The findings demonstrate changes in the management of critically ill patients, especially in relation to ventilation management, wound care and invasive monitoring practices; this resulted in shifts to the nursing workload. For this reason, the instrument is useful in providing nurse managers with information about patient dependencies and nursing work. © 2001 Australian College of Critical Care Nurses Ltd.
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