July 30, 2021
Critical Care SmartBrief
Critical Care Update
Arkansas and Oklahoma have seen a 60% increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations in the past two weeks, and children's hospitals in the states say more pediatric patients are becoming critically ill. Seeing that children are becoming more vulnerable is "a lot worrisome," said Dr. Stephanie DeLeon, a pediatrician at Oklahoma Children's Hospital in Oklahoma City.
Full Story: Becker's Hospital Review (7/28) 
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A study in the Journal of Critical Care found that sedation with propofol compared with midazolam was tied to reduced ICU stay, mechanical ventilation time and extubation time in acute surgical patients and tied to reduced extubation time in critically ill patients.
Full Story: Medical Dialogues (7/27) 
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Medicine in the News
US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy said the US must do everything possible to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates as the Delta variant continues to fuel infections across the country, particularly in areas with low vaccination coverage. States that have fully vaccinated fewer than 50% of residents are seeing almost triple the hospitalization rates and more than double the COVID-19 infection and death rates, on average, compared with states where more than half of residents have been vaccinated.
Full Story: CNN (7/30) 
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Half of US counties have high COVID-19 transmission
(John Lamparski/Getty Images)
Health experts said low levels of vaccination are behind a resurgence of COVID-19 that is leading some areas to tighten public health protocols meant to reduce transmission. According to the CDC, 49.9% of US counties have high transmission rates and 49.3% of the population has been fully vaccinated.
Full Story: CNN (7/29),  Reuters (7/28) 
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Has COVID-19 Increased Your Blood Gas Testing?
This new, comprehensive Blood Gas System Checklist can help you choose a system to meet the needs of your staff in your setting. Download Checklist
Trends and Technology
Ten data points in EHRs, when combined, can be used to forecast surges in COVID-19 cases up to six weeks in advance, according to a study in The BMJ Open. Major indicators included an uptick in patients with flu- or cold-like symptoms, and minor indicators included rising numbers of routine or urgent visits for respiratory infections.
Full Story: Healthcare IT News (7/27) 
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Dozens of hospitals and health systems across the US have announced COVID-19 vaccine mandates for their employees. A number of hospital associations have signed consensus statements supporting vaccine requirements, and national groups like the American Medical Association and the American Nurses Association signed a joint statement calling for health care facilities to implement vaccine mandates.
Full Story: The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (7/26),  Becker's Hospital Review (7/29) 
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The next health care crisis?
While the COVID-19 pandemic ushered in a global care crisis, it was also creating a perfect storm for the next health care crisis - an increase in opioid abuse. Health care professionals across the industry must be prepared for this next health care crisis, and they need to be able to identify and care for the vulnerable patients affected. Join mental health experts and health care professionals in this webinar.
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It is a time in which we will redefine what it means to be human, for this is not just the start of a revolution, it is the start of an evolution.
David A. Sinclair,
biologist, professor of genetics
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