The Healing Journal: A Novel Idea from Penn’s Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU)

The Healing Journal: A Novel Idea from Penn’s Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU)


– I found out he was gonna be in the ICU when he called me and he told me that he was at the hospital. So immediately, I rushed to the hospital. (ambulance siren) (heart rate monitor beeping) When I came in, he wasn’t doing good. He wasn’t doing good at all. – It is not uncommon for a
patients who require life support to be under sedation for days. That can lead them to a point where they don’t recall the
intensive care unit stay even if it goes on for days
that sometimes goes into weeks. – All I remember is calling the paramedics and that’s the last thing I remember. (heart rate monitor beeping quickly) (gentle music) – Now that we have
advancements in medical care, there are more patients who
are surviving critical illness. This means that there are more survivors and with this increase in survivorship, there’s been an identification
that these patients have a syndrome that’s called
post-intensive care syndrome. What happens is that these
patients have physical problems where they’re weaker than
what they were when they went into the ICU. They can’t remember things as well as what they used to be able to. – The future is really about
providing care in the ICU that minimizes the risk
of these impairments and then begins both from
the day that they arrive until they day that they’re discharged to live a life afterwards
not of impairment. And that’s where we’re focused right now. – This is important, if you
guys have time to fill this out. But it’s a get to know me page. So here you guys– – So one of the ways that
we hope to help our patients and families through their
recovery from the ICU is through the implementation
of an ICU diary which we call a Healing Journal. Patients feel cared for. They feel like their care was
personalized, individualized. They know that they weren’t
alone during this experience. It means a lot to them to
see handwritten entries from their physicians, from their nurses, from their pharmacist. Even the process of
simply writing an entry can feel therapeutic both
to the family members and to the staff ’cause
it’s a way of showing how much we care and
personalizing their stay with us here in the ICU. – I could actually let him know what was going on from day to day. Your grand-babies miss
you, they are making cards. Love you, Nisie. So the diary was kind of fun. We communicated back
and forth with nurses. We let him know who came to visit. I like the of it, I really do. And then it lets him know
how far he’s come, ’til now. – I feel pretty lucky
to be at Penn Medicine and to be a part of this. It is really something that’s innovative and it’s something that
personally I’ve seen a positive benefit both for my practice but also for our patients
and their families. – The ability to provide
something as simple as a diary, written words of pages,
to deliver to patients and their loved ones at a time
when they absolutely need it is unique and it is in many
ways what makes this type of an ICU environment
the best for our patients and their loved ones. – I read this diary all the
time and it makes me cry. I’m serious, it makes
me feel how close I came to leaving you. And how each day was
getting a little better. And reading that and the care
I received here was so good. And I really wanna hug that
lady over there because I don’t remember anything from them days. I don’t remember nothing,
it seemed like I just missed a whole week out of my life. I gotta enjoy every day I have. It’s just a blessing to be here. (gentle music)

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