The definitions for an ICU bed vary, it is mostly assumed that beds located in the ICU ward are ICU beds. The definition is not far from the truth, however, they are more than just beds found in the ICU ward. The intensive care unit (ICU bed) is a special and premium kind of bed for patients in critical and serious conditions. They are defined as special because they entail some features that differ from a normal hospital bed. ICU Beds combine smart ergonomics with advanced technology and intuitive operation. ICU beds, thus, provide both safety and comfort to the patients and caregivers alike. There are ICU Electrical Beds and Mechanical ICU Beds. The caregivers can tilt the ICU bed and can also adjust the height. Hospitals must have ICU beds in the intensive care unit for adequate and effective treatment of patients in critical and serious conditions.
What differentiates an ICU bed from a normal Hospital Bed?
Well, to start with, a normal Hospital bed can be used to cater for patients with minor and not serious conditions. However, the intensive care unit bed is specifically designed for patients in critical conditions. The bed helps and supports the patients in their condition. The bed also has some special features that support the breathing of patients by attaching the oxygen gas to facilitate breathing. A normal hospital bed cannot be used in an intensive care ward as it does not have enough features to support the recovery of the patients as well as eases the work of the nurses.
- Features of an intensive care unit bed
The ICU beds contain some special features that allow them to be used for critically ill patients. The features include:
- Fully adjustable, it is in a position to facilitate the below movement
- Back up & down;
- Knee up & down;
- Integrated overall up & down;
- back and knee up and down adjustment together;
- It has an electronic and manual CPR on the backrest for emergency
- Has drainage looks on both sides
- It is an epoxy coated mild steel framework
- has removable high-quality ABS head and end panels
- It is powered by branded medical application
- It has noiseless castors that allow movement and a central braking system.
- Trendelenburg and reverse of Trendelenburg
- It is electrically operated with a remote control
- It has an emergency battery backup
- Functions of an intensive care unit bed
The ICU bed provides safety to the patient as well as contributes to the improvement of their health. To say the least, they have tremendously eased the work of nurses when performing CPR or any other care to the patients. The ICU bed has different controls that help them to efficiently function. The Controls are inbuilt on the bed at either the side rail or base of the footboard. The ICU beds have a combination of the controls, in our case, we shall discuss the Nurse and Hand control and its benefits.
- Nurse Controls
Going by the term Nurse Control, this control is meant to assist nurses to adequately offer care to patients, its benefits include;
The Nurse Control has lock functions to protect the vulnerable patients that need help to move
The Nurse control is fixed at the bed, therefore, reducing trips and falls while nurses attend to a patient in case of an emergency.
Reduces the risk of controls getting lost, as the nurses can activate the bed without having to locate a handset.
Other accessories such as weighing scales, can be incorporated to monitor the weight of patients.
It also allows adjustments of different body parts which include
Back Rest Up and Down
Keen Up and Down
High and Low
Provide the caregiver with the proper head and Trendelenburg angle and reverse Trendelenburg position
- Hand Control
The hand control serves almost the same purpose as Nurse control but most important it ensures movement of
Back up & down
Leg up & down
Leg and back up and down
Integral up & down
One Key CPR
- Benefits of an ICU bed
- Trendelenburg position
Position in which the patient’s head is lower than the feet to increase circulation to the heart, reduce shock, and chances of a heart attack.
- Reverse Trendelenburg Position
This is most times is used in the ICU to raise the head above the heart to reduce the likelihood of passive regurgitation to gastric contents in patients.
- Fowler or semi Fowler position
Designed to reduce the incidence of ventilator-associated pneumonia, by lowering the risk of passive aspiration of gastric contents.
- Rotation Therapy
It allows patients to continuously rotate to prevent pulmonary complications and decubitus ulcers.
- Percussion Therapy
Continuously bed vibration to reduce ICU complications and facilitate the mobilization of pulmonary secretions.
- Pressure Relief Therapy
This approach allows redistribution of weight from vulnerable pressure points by inserting pressure. It is designed to prevent heart shocks and treat decubitus ulcers.
- Records weight of the Patient
Enable Command which ensures patient safety from the mechanism and a Graphical Caregiver Interface that records the weight of the patient
- Challenges of ICU bed
Intensive care unit patients are prone to develop certain conditions while in the intensive care unit bed, this includes
- Gain weight and high chances of becoming obese
Since there is less movement of patients in intensive care unit bed, they have high chances of becoming obese which may risk their health.
- Immobilization and recumbent positioning while in the ICU bed
Patients may experience immobilization challenges after recovery and may need physical therapy to improve and gain back their strength.
- Fully Electrical bed
Some ICU beds are fully electrical and may not function when there is no power or power back up
- Continuous monitoring of Nurses and Caregivers
Despite the bed being automatic Nurses need to pay on the patients to ensure that everything is functioning as expected and required.
The ICU bed has proven to provide stability and comfort for the patient. It reduces the level of stress on the Nurse’s or caregiver’s backs when adjusting the bed. The ICU bed can also be used at a home care facility for recovering patients. It has overriding features that only require the pressing of a button and it activates a positioning. All accessories put in place in place in the ICU bed are meant to ensure the patient is safe and comfortable. The ICU bed is the ideal bed for any patient in Critical Intensive Care.