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.

Please contact Aaron Kern at or + 1 202 407-7866 for more information about advertising opportunities.


 Critical Care SmartBrief

Study sounds alarm on superbugs in US hospitals
A study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found a variety of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae species in three Boston hospitals and one California hospital, findings that suggest the potentially deadly superbug is more prevalent in US hospitals than previously believed. CRE species cause 9,300 infections in the US each year and 600 deaths, with incidence rising, and researchers say greater surveillance is needed. HealthDay News (1/16)

Study looks at need for treatment with EEG periodic discharges
A study in JAMA Neurology examined when periodic discharges on electroencephalographs that do not reach the level of seizures still indicate that ICU patients may benefit from antiseizure treatment. Researchers said additional study is needed. (1/13)

Study: Use chlorhexidine in fight against Candida auris
Medscape (free registration) (1/12)

House votes to start unraveling of the ACA
The House voted Friday to take initial steps to unravel the Affordable Care Act after the Senate cleared the measure earlier last week. Members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus and moderate Tuesday Group had raised concerns about their fellow Republicans' push to roll back the Affordable Care Act without establishing the specifics of a replacement plan, and Republican governors of states that expanded Medicaid eligibility also sought to focus on developing a replacement plan before rolling back the law. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (1/13)

Hospitals create support centers for caregivers
The risk of financial penalties for high readmission rates has prompted hospitals to create support centers for family caregivers so patients have a successful transition to home, said Jill Gottlieb of Northern Westchester Hospital. Susan Reinhard, director of AARP, said family caregivers can spend many hours at the hospital but may not get attention from staff. USA Today (1/11)

NICU uses plastic bags, bowl covers to keep infants warm
The Texas Health NICU uses plastic freezer bags and bowl covers to help keep infants warm, said registered nurse Stephanie Eidson. The bags are used with a heating pad and radiant warmer, which creates a greenhouse-like effect. KDAF-TV (Dallas-Fort Worth) (1/14)

Milwaukee hospital opens new NICU
Children's Hospital in Milwaukee is opening a new level 4 NICU this week, which will be the biggest in the state with 70 private rooms. The unit includes specialized lighting, a milk kitchen and space for parents. WDJT-TV (Milwaukee) (1/16)

FDA, IBM Watson to explore blockchain technology's benefits to public health
Healthcare IT News (1/11)

The history of progress is written in the blood of men and women who have dared to espouse an unpopular cause, as, for instance, the black man's right to his body, or woman's right to her soul.
Emma Goldman, activist and writer