Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

The medical profiles of PICU patients are typically diverse and complex, representing a range of accidental and/or traumatic injuries; complex chronic medical, congenital, genetic, and developmental conditions; and new-onset acute medical conditions (e.g., diabetes, overwhelming infection, acute renal failure). PICUs serve patients with a wide age range, from infant to young adult, as well as adults with pe-diatric conditions such as cystic fibrosis. From 1995 to 2001, the number of general PICU beds in the United States grew from 306 units to 349 units, exceeding the rate of pediatric population growth in general (Randolph et al. 2004). Estimates suggest that more than 200,000 children are admitted to PICU settings annually in the United States (Col-ville 2008; Odetola et al. 2005).

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