Organ Donation, opt-in, opt-out?

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On October 3rd the Prime Minister announced plans to introduce an opt-out system of consent for organ donation into England (1), indicating that a consultation on the proposal would be launched before the end of the year.   Dr Paul Murphy, National Clinical Lead for Organ Donation, explains why the time for such a system is right.

Opt-out systems of consent are generally associated with higher donor numbers, although demonstrating a causal link remains elusive.  A consultation on a ‘soft opt out’ system in Scotland earlier in the year showed considerable support for it (2), whilst a system of so-called deemed consent already operates in Wales.  The Welsh system was enacted in December 2015 following an intense period of public education and professional preparation.  Whilst there have been encouraging signs in consent rates, as yet none have reached statistical significance and neither has there been any demonstrable increase in donor numbers.

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A consultation on a ‘soft opt out’ system in Scotland earlier in the year showed considerable support for it

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State of the Art Day 2 Round up

What has really come through in day 2 is the level of engagement and enthusiasm amongst the delegates. The varied program, enthusiasm of the speakers, and the fantastic support teams have taken the meeting from strength to strength.

The myth busting session in the morning got many people thinking: contrast induced nephropathy may not exist, post intensive care syndrome may not have anything to do with intensive care, and the Stewart model might just reign supreme for acid-base interpretation!

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State of the Art 2017 Day 1 Round Up.

We’ve had an incredibly energetic first day at State of the Art. People were buzzing as they entered the gates bright and early and the energy has yet to die down as I write this in the midst of the drinks reception sponsored by GE.

Our social media group were fantastic. They were on hand all day to moderate the various sessions, live-stream interviews with speakers and periscope stream from the conference floor.

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State of the Art – Open to Everyone.

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Dr Jeremy Groves shares his excitement for the upcoming annual State of the Art conference on 04/12/17. 

I’m excited.

I’m excited because, despite the long evenings, some very British rain while cycling home and the prospect of a weekend on-call, I have the State of the Art to look forward to next week.

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FICE Accreditation – past, present and future

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Marcus Peck (@ICUltrasonica), Consultant Intensivist, Frimley Park Hospital, & FICE Chair, discusses the history and growth of FICE and what exciting developments will be coming in the future.  

The first time I saw a heart move I was captivated, and I knew immediately that echocardiography and ultrasound would make a huge impact on intensive care medicine.

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Advanced Critical Care Practitioners. Time for action.

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Carole Boulanger, an Advanced Critical Care Practitioner (ACCP), discusses the role and how regulation is as equally important to ACCPs as it is to Physician Associates, and therefore the best way forward for the profession.

The Advanced Critical Care Practitioner (ACCP) has become a workforce solution for critical care units and is fully supported by the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM) and the Intensive Care Society (ICS). The role developed from clinical need and provides a career option for nurses and allied health professionals (AHPs) wishing to choose clinical progression, rather than management or education; thereby keeping experience at the bedside.

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JICS is listed in PubMed .

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 The Society’s journal, the Journal of the Intensive Care Society, has achieved the milestone of a PubMed listing.  Jeremy Groves considers the background and implications of the decision.

The Journal of the Intensive Care Society (JICS) has always had a bit of a place in my heart.  Not only has it published a couple of my articles (astute, discerning editors) but it is readable too.  The format is light and airy, it has a wide variety of papers and individuals from all the disciplines within our speciality contribute.

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#FiftyScansInFiftyDays – My journey through FICE Accreditation

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 Dr Nitin Arora (@aroradrn), Consultant Intensivist at Heart of England NHS Trust, discusses his journey in attempting to complete #fiftyscansinfifty days and offers advice to those undertaking the FICE accreditation.

Over the last few years, FICE has become the de-facto standard bedside focused echo accreditation for UK intensive care. Having tried and failed to complete my FEEL logbook as a registrar in 2012, I decided I’d try again as a consultant. After 2 years, a business case and having trialled various machines, our 2 new machines finally arrived in April 2017, and I immediately set about finding a FICE course.

Day 1 (FICE Course)

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The Beginning of the End?

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Dr Gary Masterson, President of the Society, reflects on how changes in the way critical care is commissioned may impact on critical care bed provision.

There have always been (and always will be) bed pressures in critical care. I don’t know about you, but I find this the most stressful aspect of my job. However, over the last 20 years of my working life as a consultant, when I have had the misfortune of stumping around my hospital’s general wards, I am always extremely glad to return home to my critical care unit. The general wards struggle: they’re jam-packed with elderly and frail patients with nowhere else to go, grossly understaffed, chaotic and little in the way of continuity of care. You know what I mean. In critical care, we don’t suffer these problems to the same extent and, since the advent of critical care networks and a more regional approach to managing critical care beds, we can usually cope when bed are short.

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The press, medical information, ethics and money

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Jeremy Groves reflects on some of the wider issues arising from the tragic case of Charlie Gard.

I have already written about something the adult critical care community can take away from the tragic case of Charlie Gard; however, I think there are several other issues that we can mull over.  Charlie and his parents’ plight captured the public’s attention and everyone had a view, as I discussed before, informed or otherwise.  To me it was striking how much of the discussion, and presentation of clinical information, took place in the press.

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