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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 3-5

Successful Rapid Deployment of Intensive Care Services in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Case Study in Saudi Arabia

1 Research Center, Dr. Sulaiman Al Habib Medical Group; College of Medicine, Alfaisal University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2 Research Center, Almoosa Specialist Hospital, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia, School of Nursing, Wollongong University, Australia
3 Research Center, Dr. Sulaiman Al Habib Medical Group, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
4 Ministry of Health, Madinah, Saudi Arabia
5 Ohoud Hospital, Ministry of Health, Madinah, Saudi Arabia
6 Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory, Johns Hopkins Aramco Healthcare, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Abbas Al Mutair
Almoosa Specialist Hospital, Dahran St, Alfaisal District, Al-Ahsa, P.O.Box: 5098, Eastern Province l

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/sccj.sccj_44_20

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The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has triggered a significant demand to support the most affected areas of severe and acute cases inside Saudi Arabia including the application of telemedicine. During the pandemic, the intensive care unit (ICU) staff from the largest private health-care sector were deployed to support the national critical care services and overcome the shortage of ICU staff in the greatest affected regions in Saudi Arabia. This study aims to describe the administrative actions taken to manage and treat the severe cases of COVID-19 that required ICU services and the deployment of the ICU services provided by private health-care providers to the most affected areas. The ICU staff have been rapidly deployed from the largest private health-care provider in the Middle East, from Riyadh province in the Central Region of Saudi Arabia for Madinah province in the Western region. Within 10 weeks, a total of 309 patients have received ICU and tele-ICU services. Approximately, 208 ICU staff, including intensivists, nurses, respiratory therapists, clinical nutritionists, and clinical pharmacists, have been providing ICU services 24 h a day, 7 days a week. The tele-ICU command center has provided valuable support, including the expert clinical guidance and consultation from the expert ICU consultants, utilizing audio-visual telecommunication networks, and governance of quality of the ICU among other many functions. With an average of 11.82% mortality rate, no accidental re-intubation reported cases, a zero re-intubation and re-admission rate within 48 h, this approach can be successfully followed and implemented in the future for risk and crisis management at local and international levels.

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