Tuesday, May 30, 2006

United States DHHS report: suboptimal critical care and looming shortage of intensivists

The Department of Health and Human Services released a report to Congress today entitled Critical Care Workforce: A Study of the Supply and Demand for Critical Care -- it discusses critical care broadly and notes a potential coming shortage of intensivists (through 2020). The report details the history of the intensivist role and examines data on supply and demand related to this role in the US.

The report draws from recent studies of the intensivist workforce in the US and infers that the proportion of patients receiving intensivist-managed care should increase from the current level (one-third of patients) for improved patient outcomes; the report also notes the lack of availability of intensivist care management in many settings.

(Additional press release highlights available via Medscape)

Supporting data from the Committee on Manpower for the Pulmonary and Critical Care Societies (COMPACCS) study:

Critical care delivery in the United States: distribution of services and compliance with Leapfrog recommendations. Crit Care Med. 2006 Apr;34(4):1016-24.

Caring for the critically ill patient. Current and projected workforce requirements for care of the critically ill and patients with pulmonary disease: can we meet the requirements of an aging population? JAMA. 2000 Dec 6;284(21):2762-70.


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