BACKGROUND: Staffing of attending intensivists 24 hours per day, 7 days per week (24/7) in the surgical intensive care unit (SICU) has unknown benefits.We hypothesized that 24/7 attending intensivist staffing in the SICUwould improve outcomes and processes of care. METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed 26 months of admissions to our 20-bed SICU, comparing 13 months before and 13 months after addition of an in-house night intensivist to the existing day intensivist with a nighttime on-demand model. Primary outcomes were mortality, complications, SICU length of stay, and ventilator days. Secondary outcomes were use of intensivist-directed ancillary testing and therapies, as well as physician billing (relative value units per full-time equivalent [RVU/FTE]). RESULTS: A total of 2,829 patients were included: 1,408 before and 1,421 after 24/7 staffing. Baseline characteristics, mortality, complications, ventilation days, ICU and hospital length of stay, and readmission rate were similar between groups (all p > 0.05). Use of blood products and imaging tests (computed tomographic scans) were significantly reduced. Total RVU increased, as did the RVU/FTE ratio. CONCLUSION: Implementation of 24/7 staffing did not improve SICU morbidity or mortality but was associated with decreased blood product use and fewer axial imaging studies. The RVU/FTE ratio was improved. Overall health care value may be decreased under this model.
- Intensive care
- Surgical intensive care unit
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine