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July 21, 1969

The Intensive Care Complex

Author Affiliations

Hartford, Conn

JAMA. 1969;209(3):418-419. doi:10.1001/jama.1969.03160160054023

To the Editor:—  The article by Vreeland and Ellis (208:332, 1969), "Stresses on the Nurse in an Intensive Care Unit," emphasizes again the urgent need for recognition by the hospital and nursing administrations of the entirely different tempo, and aggressive type of emergency care required for critically ill patients. Although the article deals with a postsurgical intensive care unit (ICU), the warning applies equally to a cardiology or coronary unit (CICU). The training and orientation of the nurse must be specially adapted to the needs of the short-term, acutely ill, and usually monitored patient. The anxiety resulting from insecurity in her knowledge or inexperience in training should not be allowed to jeopardize either her capabilities or the efficiency of the whole ICU complex. The increased responsibilities expected of nurses in the care of patients likely to suffer cardiopulmonary arrest requires more up-dated, long-range administrative planning and orientation than ordinarily