Designed specifically for critical care physicians, Critical Care SmartBrief is a complimentary twice weekly e-mail newsletter. Compiled from thousands of sources including news sites and blogs, it provides the latest litigation, research and policy news in the critical care community. Visit the archives to access previous issues. Mobile device versions are also available. Read the top stories shared by Critical Care SmartBrief readers.

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 Critical Care SmartBrief

ICU boarding tied to lower quality care, study finds
Surgical ICU patients sent to other hospital units overall received less bedside attention from critical care teams, compared with patients kept in the home ICU, researchers reported in the American Journal of Surgery. Study data showed clinicians spent about 16% less time with boarder patients during rounds, and about 71% of boarders were seen in the final fifth of rounds, compared with 13% of non-boarders. HealthLeaders Media (6/22)

Study: Decolonization more effective, cost-efficient for MRSA
A study in Critical Care Medicine found targeted and universal decolonization in ICUs reduced MRSA infections better than screening and isolation, as well as being more cost-effective. Study data showed costs for universal and targeted decolonization were similar. Medscape (free registration) (6/20)

Study finds glucose control important during ICU transitions
Patient outcomes may be improved by monitoring and maintaining glucose levels in patients as they transition from the ICU to general units, according to a study to be published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. The retrospective study of ICU patients suggests for those who do not have diabetes, the current blood glucose targets range may not be appropriate. Hartford Business Journal (Conn.) (6/21)

Senate bill calls for steep cuts to Medicaid, end of mandate
Senate Republicans on Thursday released a 142-page bill, aimed at repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, that would make steep cuts to Medicaid and end the requirement for all Americans to have health insurance, while creating new federal tax credits to help people buy coverage. The bill, which could face opposition from conservative and moderate Republican senators along with Democrats, would allow states to drop benefits mandated by the ACA, such as maternity and mental health care. The New York Times (free-article access for SmartBrief readers) (6/22)

Opioid-related hospitalizations increase 75% among women
HealthDay News (6/21)

Researchers create device to block alarm sounds for ICU patients
Vanderbilt University Medical Center researchers created an in-ear device to silence medical alarms for ICU patients, but said future studies are needed to see if it improves outcomes. Initial ICU testing of the device, which still allows patients to hear speech and environmental sounds, showed it could effectively filter out alarm sounds. Clinical Innovation + Technology online (6/22)

Fetal monitoring app alerts woman to potential pregnancy complication
A Des Moines, Iowa, woman says the Count the Kicks app, which monitors fetal movement, alerted her to a potential problem during her pregnancy and may have saved the life of her child. Emily Eekhoff said she noticed fetal movement had slowed so she went to the hospital, where physicians found the umbilical cord had wrapped around the baby's neck three times and did an emergency cesarean section delivery to deliver her daughter. WHO-TV (Des Moines, Iowa) (6/20)

Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.
Publilius Syrus, writer