• 5/7/2023

    Doha, 07 May 2023: Women Wellness and Research Center (WWRC) is setting the standards for intensive care labor services in the region and an example to be followed by leading tertiary maternity centers in the world by establishing new level 2 Intensive Care Unit in its labor room to provide continuity of care and safe transition of care for pregnant population who are at high risk of severe morbidity or mortality. At the new ICU unit, the high-risk pregnant women will be assessed and followed by the same team right from their induction time to delivery and throughout their immediate post-partum care.

    The ICU labor room initiative represents one of the goals in WWRC’s new strategic plan to develop current service standards in order to enhance the management of high-risk obstetric patients. A multidisciplinary team of obstetricians, anesthetists, intensivists, and nurses will engage timely to provide high level of care for this category of patients.

    “We are aiming to improve outcomes and experience of critically ill pregnant women in labor by establishing a level 2 ICU units in the labor room and it is our expectations that this labor ICU services will enable the high-risk patients who are eligible for normal vaginal delivery to be closely monitored and supervised. This initiative is expected to set the standards for similar services in the region and an example to be followed by leading tertiary maternity centers in the world. The vision of WWRC is to deliver the safest, most effective, and most compassionate care to our patients. Improved patients’ experience is priority. Upholding high standards of safety in a tertiary maternity hospital is imperative. Particular attention needs to be directed towards high-risk pregnant population who are at risk of severe morbidity or mortality. The intrapartum phase for high risk and critically ill pregnant women is paramount. Improving the care provided to this population will impact the outcome and experience,” explains Dr. Hilal Amin Al Rifai, WWRC’s Chief Executive Officer and Medical Director.

    He states that though the hospital currently provides this level of care for antenatal and postnatal patients, however, the period of maximum risk due to maximum hemodynamic changes which means intrapartum period is not covered for the same patients by proper ICU service adding that creating ICU unit in the labor ward can mitigate this gap in care.

    According to him, creating an ICU unit in labor ward will help in providing continuity of care and safe transition of care for patients as all the team members will be physically present in the labor ward and it will improve patient safety through minimizing transfer of critically ill patients across units and provide care through specialized critical care nurse. “Other important advantages of creating this new units are early recognition and prompt treatment of deteriorating patients; easier accessibility to operating theatre in case of emergency; easier accessibility to level 3 ICU in ACC through connecting doors should need arises; better patient and family experience; staff satisfaction using blended care, midwives and critical care nurses; staff feels better supported; eliminate waste, as time needed in shifting among units in addition to endorsement times will be reduced; cost reduction as it has been described by (John Lewis 2019) that optimization of patients’ condition pre-admission to ICU leads to shorter stay and better outcomes. Moreover, need for level 3 ICU can be decreased; and improve patient’s experience through continuity of care and decreasing number of transfers,” Dr. Al Rifai adds.