A National Seminar on 'Critical care' was held in Thiruvalla, Kerala, India to emphasize the need to improve critical care. The topics of the sessions included 'Shock resuscitation', 'Infection control in Intensive Care Unit' and 'Nutrition and the critically ill'.
"Critical care in India is at a crossroads, and requires dedicated efforts to achieve the target of providing scientific, humane, and meaningful service to the critically ill," said Fr. Shaji Vazhayil, Chief executive officer of the Pushpagiri Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS), Thiruvalla.
Mathew Pulicken, Head of the Department of Critical Care at PIMS, said that the life expectancy has improved over the past 50years from an average of 21 in pre-Independence era to 64 years.
The growth of quality healthcare in India, public health measures and provision of quality critical care in hospitals would be the reason for the possible changes.
Dr. Pulicken said critical care in India had its beginning in the late 1960s, and the early intensive care units (ICUs) were primitive in technology. The evolution of corporate hospitals brought significant improvements to the infrastructure and standard of care in the ICUs in the 1980s.
A panel discussion on ethical dilemmas in ICUs was also held. The session emphasized the importance of judicious use of life-supportive interventions on geriatric patients, how to improve communication with patients' relatives in the management of the critically ill, and how to evolve a low-cost, affordable intensive care system in our social set-up.