Intermediate care units and their role in medical wards

Published: 8 August 2017
Author(s): Joana Azevedo Duarte, Renata Ribeiro, Luís Melo, Ana Furtado, Célia Henriques
Issue: August 2017
Section: Letter to the Editor

Intermediate Medical Care Units (IMCU) warrant the treatment and monitoring of clinically unstable patients with organ dysfunction or at risk of organ failure and allow a decreased length of stay in the ICU without an increased total length of hospital stay, not having a negative impact in the patient's survival [1,2]. The importance of creating IMCUs integrated in medical wards relies on the fact that many of these patients need a higher care than the one offered in the ward but do not required ICU assistance, in other words, they mostly need continuous monitoring and clinical surveillance and not organ support therapy.