The New Yorker Puts Spotlight on Post-Intensive Care Syndrome

The New Yorker profiled intensive care unit (ICU) patient Charlie Atkinson and his struggle with the long-term outcomes of his care. “After a month in the I.C.U., Atkinson was well enough to leave the hospital. He had ‘made it.’ But he remained dependent on a ventilator and confused—able to recognize his own name and little else. He didn’t know it, but he had crossed an invisible threshold into a territory of protracted sickness and uncertain hope for improvement,” according to the article “The Limbo Between A Life Worth Living and Death.” The article details the challenges patients face after critical illness and signifies a rising awareness about post-intensive care syndrome.

The Society of Critical Care Medicine offers numerous resources to help educate patients about post-intensive care syndrome at, including several interviews with former ICU patients.

In addition, the Society’s ICU Liberation initiative offers clinicians tools to improve long-term outcomes. A recently added presentation from Alison Clay, MD, recounts her own ICU survivor story.

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