Clinical Profile of Critically Ill Patients Presenting to Emergency Department of Tertiary Level Hospital of Nepal
Introduction: Among critically ill patients presenting to Emergency Room (ER) of Tribhuwan University Teaching Hospital (TUTH), a number of patients have to either remain in ER or have to be referred outside due to unavailability of critical care beds. Studies have shown significant association between delayed admission and mortality rates along with increased length of stay and higher cost. This study aimed to present an audit of critically ill patients presenting to ER of TUTH.
Methods: This was a prospective study conducted over a period of one month. All patients presenting to ER of TUTH were triaged and critically ill patients were shifted to Red area of the ER. All patients ≥16 years of age shifted to Red area during the study period were enrolled in our study.
Results: Out of 3718 patients presenting to ER during the study period, the number of critically ill patients ≥16 years of age was 526 i.e. 14.14% of total patients. Among them, the common diagnosis were Cerebrovascular Accidents (CVA) followed by Intoxication, Acute Exacerbation(AE) of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease(COPD), Pneumonia and Chronic Kidney Disease(CKD) respectively. Almost 20% of these patients were admitted, 31% were referred and 40% were shifted for observation. The median length of ER stay was 6 hours (Mean: 8.5 hrs; Range: 20 min to 70 hr 15 min).
Conclusion: Among critically ill patients presenting to our ER, almost 1/5th of the patients were admitted whereas more than 2/3rd were either referred or remained in our ER. This data highlights the need for solutions to provide optimal care for the acute phase management of the critically ill patients.
Keywords: Critically ill patients, Monitoring beds, Red area