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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 17-21

Respiratory intensive care unit: An initiative during pandemic COVID-19

Division of Pulmonology, Department of Medicine, King Saud University, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Abdullah Rashed Alharbi
Division of Pulmonology, Department of Medicine, King Saud University
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/sccj.sccj_6_22

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Background: With the COVID-19 pandemic having a significant negative impact on the health-care systems globally, different models of respiratory intermediate care units were shown to play a vital role in the management of COVID-19 patients, especially those with impaired oxygenation. The present study demonstrates that respiratory intermediate care units were helpful in reducing health-care cost and acting as a backup for intensive care units (ICUs) in Saudi Arabia. Design and Setting: This is a retrospective study that was carried out in King Saud University Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, between June 15, 2020, and August 7, 2020. The study team collected information from patients' records. The data collected comprised patient's demographic information, admission site, admission criteria, and length of hospital stay. Descriptive and comparative analyses were carried out through the SPSS version 26. Results: Eighty-one patients were eligible for inclusion: 67.9% were male, 58% were above 50 years old, and similar proportions were overweight. Chronic kidney disease was the most commonly occurring comorbidity (23.5%), whereas only three patients had hypertension, and a similar number had some form of immunosuppression. In addition, 44.4% of patients were admitted through COVID wards. The mean length of hospital stay was 11 ± 5 days, with 54.3% of patients staying for more than 10 days. About 97.5% of the patients were transferred to the general medical COVID-19 ward, whereas only 2.5% were admitted to ICU. The percentage of high-flow oxygen either high-flow nasal cannula or noninvasive ventilator was 66.2 ± 15.7%. About 27.2% of the patients required oxygenation through a simple standard interface such as a mask or nasal cannula. There was no significant difference among age groups and different body mass index categories in terms of hospitalization course and oxygenation. Females used noninvasive ventilation (P = 0.008) more than males. Conclusion: Females are more prone to higher oxygenation needs compared to males with COVID-19 infections. Respiratory care units can reduce the number of females who need ICU admissions for noninvasive ventilation.

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