The Trauma, Emergency Surgery, and Surgical Critical Care Division is responsible for the surgical critical care program at University Hospital. As a Level 1 trauma center and a busy tertiary care surgical facility, the surgical intensive care unit (SICU) is a pivotal educational experience for the surgical resident. This 20-bed state-of-the-art SICU provides the highest level of care possible. Directed by a surgical intensivist, the multidisciplinary critical care team is primarily responsible for all patients in the SICU, co-managing patients with the primary service. The SICU team consists of an intensivist in the Department of Surgery or Anesthesiology, a nurse practitioner or physician assistant, and residents from surgery, anesthesia, and emergency medicine, providing around-the-clock care.
All aspects of monitoring and procedures, such as percutaneous tracheostomies, esophago-gastro-duodenoscopy with percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube placement, pulmonary artery catheter placement, and transesophogeal Doppler monitoring are performed in the SICU.
Overlapping with the trauma program’s basic science and clinical research protocols, there are dedicated research clinical associates to aid with bedside protocols. Multidisciplinary rounds include the medical team, nursing team, pharmacist, respiratory therapist, physical therapist, occupational therapist, and speech pathology, social service and nutritional support specialists.
The Department of Surgery also offers an ACGME-accredited surgical critical care residency (fellowship), one of the few in the United States, to provide more sophisticated, intensive training to critical care surgeons.
Attending faculty surgeons are all experienced and board accredited in critical care, with a focus on the surgical patient. There are detailed daily attending bedside rounds and an online didactic education curriculum that facilitate care in this high acuity SICU. Procedures such as central line placement, arterial line placement, and tube thoracostomies and thoracocentesis are performed at the bedside.