Self-Directed Ultrasound Now Available

The Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) new Self-Directed Critical Care Ultrasound training courses allow you to learn at your own pace from the comfort and convenience of your home or office. Choose from the following:

Self-Directed Critical Care Ultrasound

Self-Directed Critical Care Ultrasound provides a relaxed learning experience with access to the same didactic sessions from the live version of the Critical Care Ultrasound course. This course includes 4 modules with synchronized speaker audio and pre- and post-tests are utilized to assess your knowledge. 8.5 hours of CE is available for nurses and physicians.

Self-Directed Critical Care Ultrasound with Simulation

Benefit from all of the features provided with the Self-Directed Critical Care Ultrasound course, plus enhance your learning experience with a hand-held simulation sensor that transforms your personal computer into your own ultrasound training solution and includes links to specific case-based simulations that allow you to practice the techniques presented in the didactic lectures. The cases cover a broad spectrum of normal and pathologic cases.

For more product details or to make a purchase, visit the SCCM Online Store.

Pre-Congress Educational Sessions Now Available On Demand

Now you can experience the stimulating pre-Congress educational sessions from the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) 43rd Critical Care Congress as if you were there.

The following On Demand courses are available for purchase:

The On Demand versions of the pre-Congress educational sessions give you access to videos containing both slides and lectures in a searchable format, making it the next best thing to attending the live event. Once you’ve purchased an On Demand course, you can access the material as often as you like by logging into

If you were a registrant for a pre-Congress educational session, your Congress On Demand subscription now includes complimentary access to that session. Your subscription to this service can be accessed by logging into with your Customer ID and password.

Is Tight Glucose Control Beneficial for Critically Ill Children?

The detrimental effects of hyperglycemia in critically ill patients has been well described in the literature. However, the benfefits of maintaining normoglycemia using insulin infusions has been controversial. In 2009, The New England Journal of Medicine published a study by the NICE-SUGAR Study Investigators that appeared to answer the question about risks and benefits of intensive insulin therapy. Studying more than 6,000 subjects, the authors showed an increase in mortality in critically ill adults who underwent intensive glucose control, compared to those who underwent conventional control of their blood sugars. Interestingly, in the same year, a pediatric study was published in Lancet by Vlasselaers et al that demonstrated a decrease in mortality and length of pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) stay in those patients who had intensive glucose control, compared to the conventional therapy. Though it should be noted that while this study randomized 700 children, it was a single-center trial whose subjects were primarily children who had undergone cardiac surgery (around 75%).

In this study by Macrae et al, the authors randomized more than 1,300 critically ill children from 13 centers to undergo either tight glucose control (maintaining blood glucose levels between 72-126 mg/dl) or conventional therapy (infusing insulin only in patients whose blood glucose levels were over 216 mg/dl until they dropped to 180 mg/dl). The authors recruited children between the ages of 36 weeks of corrected gestational age and 16 years of age. Like the the Vlasselaers study, a predominance of subjects underwent cardiac surgery compared to other reasons for PICU admission (around 60% and 40%, respectivley). The aims of this study were to assess whether tight glycemic control could reduce morbidity and mortality rates and associated costs for critically ill children compared to conventional therapy.

Read more…

Registration is Now Open for the 2014 Board Review Courses

The Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) 2014 Adult and Pediatric Multiprofessional Critical Care Board Review Courses (MCCBRC) are the preferred resource for critical care professionals seeking a comprehensive review of content focused on the diagnosis, monitoring and management of critically ill patients.

These four-and-a-half-day intensive courses include interactive board preparation sessions using audience response technology and feature practice board questions, answers and rationales. World-class faculty will focus on preparing fellows and attendings for their critical care certification and recertification.

Participants benefit by fulfilling continuing education  requirements and gaining accurate assessments of their knowledge in critical care. The course also provides an excellent update for any critical care professional seeking the most current review of the field.

The 2014 Adult and Pediatric MCCBRC will be held August 12 to 16, 2014, at the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park, in Chicago, Illinois, USA. Visit the Adult and Pediatric MCCBRC webpages for more information and to register.

Join the Creative Community

Joining the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s Creative Community is one of the most important contributions a member can make in helping the Society achieve its mission and vision. If you are interested in joining the Creative Community, the online committee application must be completed by logging into Applications are due May 1, 2014. Appointments are made each September for the following year.

Please note that reappointment to a committee is not automatic. If you are already a committee or task force member and your term is about to expire, you will need to reapply.

Members of the Creative Community not only play an active role in Society activities and initiatives, they also gain leadership skills and networking opportunities.

Visit the Creative Community Resource Center for more information.

AHA Survey Seeks Critical Care Input

The American Heart Association (AHA) is preparing to revise its 2010 guidelines for cardiopulmonary resuscitation  and emergency cardiovascular care. The AHA’s Emergency Cardiovascular Care Committee has identified members of the critical care community as key stakeholders in this process. Please participate in this brief survey to provide feedback that may be used to craft the 2015 guidelines.

SCCM Offers Influenza Resources

Intensive care units (ICUs) have already seen an influx of patients with the influenza virus this year, including influenza A (H1N1) pdm09 (pH1N1). That activity is expected to increase substantially in the coming weeks and months. Prevention with influenza vaccination is strongly recommended; all persons aged 6 months and older, including healthcare personnel, should be vaccinated now.

The Society of Critical Care Medicine has gathered influenza resources to keep ICU professionals informed.

Staying up to date on the latest developments this influenza season is vital as ICU professionals strive to provide the Right Care, Right Now.™

43rd Critical Care Congress On Demand is Now Available

sq-CongressNow you can experience the stimulating educational content from the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) 43rd Critical Care Congress as if you were there.

Congress On Demand gives you access to videos containing both slides and lectures from every session in a searchable format, making it the next best thing to attending the live event. Once you’ve purchased Congress On Demand, you can access the materials as often as you like by logging into

Bring the Congress educational experience to your home or office. Congress On Demand is available for purchase in the SCCM online store. The registration rate for SCCM members is just $295 ($385 for nonmembers).

If you attended this year’s Congress, your subscription to this service was included in your registration fee. The materials can be accessed by logging into with your Customer ID and password.

Register Now for the Summer Critical Care Ultrasound Courses

Focused ultrasound examinations in the critical care setting have become an extension of the clinical assessment because of their rapid, precise detection capabilities. Assist in the immediate management of patients by learning or enhancing point-of-care ultrasound skills.

Obtain the realistic training needed to perform and interpret ultrasound imaging with the Society of Critic al Care Medicine’s (SCCM) comprehensive, two-day Critical Care Ultrasound or Pediatric Critical Care Ultrasound course. In each, participants benefit from guided, focused skill stations and interactive presentations to reinforce key learning points. Extensive faculty coverage ensures a significant hands-on experience for each participant.

In SCCM’s one-day Advanced Critical Care Ultrasound course, fundamental echocardiographic skills and knowledge are expanded and focus on the specialty-specific use of echocardiography in the management of the critically ill patient. Participants explore the noninvasive management of the hemodynamically unstable patient.

The summer ultrasound courses will be held August 17 to 19, 2014, at the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park, in Chicago, Illinois, USA. For further  details and to register, visit the ultrasound courses web page.

Esmolol for Heart Rate Control in Septic Shock

Septic shock is associated with the excessive sympathetic stress associated with a number of adverse physiological effects, ranging from myocardial depression to immunosuppression. Morelli and colleagues from the Sapienza University of Rome conducted a study to determine whether administration of a short-acting beta-adrenoreceptor blocker, esmolol, could reduce heart rate to a target range of 80 to 94 beats per minute (bpm) in patients with septic shock. The physiologic consequences of heart rate reduction were also examined, as well as secondary clinical outcomes.

Read more…

Critical Care Societies Collaborative: Choosing Wisely

The Critical Care Societies Collaborative (CCSC) released a list of “Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question” in critical care as part of the Choosing Wisely® campaign, led by the ABIM Foundation. The list identifies five targeted, evidence-based recommendations that can support physicians and patients in making wise choices about their care:

  • Don’t order diagnostic tests at regular intervals (such as every day), but rather in response to specific clinical questions.
  • Don’t transfuse red blood cells in hemodynamically stable, non-bleeding ICU patients with a hemoglobin concentration greater than 7 g/dL.
  • Don’t use parenteral nutrition in adequately nourished critically ill patients within the first seven days of an ICU stay.
  • Don’t deeply sedate mechanically ventilated patients without a specific indication and without daily attempts to lighten sedation.
  • Don’t continue life support for patients at high risk for death or severely impaired functional recovery without offering patients and their families the alternative of care focused entirely on comfort.

CCSC nominated 10 individuals to represent all four societies and several disciplines including internal medicine, surgery, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, and critical care nursing. The taskforce created a list of 58 items for consideration. They put the list through various evaluations, debates and grading systems to come up with a penultimate list of five that all four societies could endorse.

SCCM’s 43rd Critical Care Congress Breaks Records, Opportunities to Learn Continue All Year

sq-CongressThank you to all who attended the 43rd Critical Care Congress in beautiful San Francisco, California, USA, last week. This year’s meeting proved to be the largest yet, breaking records with more than 4,600 intensive care professionals enjoying all Congress had to offer, from enlightening didactic presentations and hands-on learning, to networking and social activities.

Video from key Congress sessions, including the Presidential Address from J. Christopher Farmer, MD, FCCM, and plenary sessions, are now available. Look for Congress On Demand to be available soon.

Plan now to attend the 44th Critical Care Congress, which will be held January 17-21, 2015, in Phoenix, Arizona, USA.

It’s Sepsis and You Know It!

If you missed this great video from the University of Kansas at the Congress Opening Session, or just want to get the song stuck in your head again, it’s worth checking out.

Register by January 29 for the MCCKAP Exam

Advance registration rates end January 29, 2014, for the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) 2014 Multidisciplinary Critical Care Knowledge Assessment Program (MCCKAP). The exam will be administered online February 27 to March 7, 2014.

The MCCKAP online exam assesses critical care fellowship programs nationally. Held every spring, the MCCKAP exam helps program directors:

  • Prepare fellows for the subspecialty board examinations in critical care
  • Identify specific areas of strength and weakness with lists of references and key terms for missed questions
  • Assess results for each individual fellow and the overall program as well as the institution’s national ranking
  • Review preliminary scores and analysis immediately upon completion of the test

Available in both adult and pediatric formats, the exam is offered exclusively online and consists of 200 multiple-choice questions pertaining to critical care knowledge and patient management. Exam content is developed by critical care professionals experienced in exam preparation and analysis.

Register online using your Customer ID and password, or contact SCCM Customer Service at +1 847 827-6888.

Webcast to Discuss Family Satisfaction Assessment Tool

sq-Quality-Project-Dispatch v1_0The Family Satisfaction-Intensive Care Unit (FS-ICU) survey is an extensively validated instrument for assessing family satisfaction with general care and shared decision making. The neuroscience ICU at Yale-New Haven Hospital (YNHH NICU) is using the FS-ICU survey to collect continuous data from all families of patients whose length of stay exceed 72 hours. The survey is also being sent to families of patients who died or received comfort measures in the unit. Results of the survey will be used in to further research and quality improvement initiatives.

In this presentation, David Y. Hwang, MD, and Jennifer Robinson, APRN, will discuss what prompted the YNHH NICU team to initiate this effort, what has been learned so far, and what new projects the results have generated. They will also discuss the logistics of using the FS-ICU survey and cost-effective strategies for continuous measurement of family satisfaction.

Learning Objectives

  • Review the components of the FS-ICU survey, and compare this instrument to others designed to assess the family experience in critical care environments
  • Explore recent results of the ongoing FS-ICU study by the YNHH NICU
  • Share insights on fostering local multidisciplinary interest in improving family satisfaction and launching cost-effective research initiatives

The webcast, Using the FS-ICU Survey Instrument to Understand and Improve Family Satisfaction in a Neuroscience ICU, will take place on Wednesday, February, 5, 2014, at 12:00 p.m. Central Time (view additional time zones).

Register online today. Registration is complimentary for all participants. If you have any questions, please contact SCCM Customer Service at +1 847 827-6888.

This webcast was organized by the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s Project Dispatch. Project Dispatch aims to improve the quality, efficacy, accessibility, and cost-effectiveness of healthcare in the United States by developing and distributing resources for critical care clinicians focused on patient-centered research. This project is supported by grant number R18HS21940 from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Project Dispatch iCritical Care Podcasts

SCCM Pod-232: Assessing Family Satisfaction using the FS-ICU Instrument in a Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit

Michael Weinstein, MD, FACS, FCCP, speaks with David Hwang, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology in the Division of Neurocritical Care and Emergency Neurology at the Yale School of Medicine and a neurointensivist at the Yale-New Haven Hospital. Dr. Hwang will be hosting a webcast in 2014 featuring the FS-ICU tool, a well validated survey instrument utilized to assess family satisfaction with ICU care and shared decision-making. He will discuss the data collected from his Neuro ICU as well as his unit’s experience and why they became interested in family satisfaction research.  Released: 1/2/14

SCCM Pod-231: Family Presence: Evidence vs. Emotion

Margaret Parker, MD, FCCM speaks with Cathie Guzzetta, RN, PhD, HNC, FAAN, Director of Holistic Nursing Consultants at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC. Dr. Guzzetta has been mentoring nurses and physicians in conducting family presence research and developing family presence programs since the mid-1990s. She will discuss Family Presence during CPR and invasive procedures.

These podcasts were made possible through a grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality in support of Project Dispatch — Disseminating Patient-Centered Outcomes Research to Healthcare Professionals. This project was supported by grant number R18HS21940 from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Short- Versus Long-Duration Antibiotic Regimens for Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia

The use of shorter antibiotic regimens (7-8 days) for ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) may help reduce adverse drug effects, prevent proliferation of multidrug resistant organisms, and decrease costs. Dimopoulos and colleagues performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine if shorter therapeutic antimicrobial regimens for VAP were associated with adverse outcomes.

Read more…

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