Critical Care (ICU)

Critical care services are an essential component of the care of many hospital patients. Patients requiring critical care are amongst the sickest in the hospital and therefore require access to extensive facilities, equipment and experienced staff.

We provide critical care departments at Lincoln County Hospital, Pilgrim Hospital, Boston and Grantham and District Hospital which care for hundreds of seriously ill patients a year and provide very specialised skills.

Patients tend to be admitted after surgery or following an accident or severe illness. They may be unable to breathe on their own or have multiple organ failure. Critical care beds have specialist monitoring equipment and patients requiring intensive care receive one-to-one care, high dependency patients are cared for on a two patients-to-one nurse basis.

The Critical Care Units at Lincoln, Boston and Grantham are all part of the Mid-Trent Critical Care Network, which also includes hospitals in Mansfield, Derby, Burton on Trent and Nottingham.

Lincoln County Hospital

Lincoln has an intensive care unit with 16 beds to manage level 2 (HDU) and level 3 (ICU) critically ill patients.

The Lincoln unit is staffed by a dedicated team of consultant intensivists supported by registrars on rotation from Nottingham and Leicester. The nursing staff are led by a team of senior sisters with support from experienced and motivated staff, who are dedicated to the provision of high quality patient care.

During our most recent CQC inspection the critical care department at Lincoln unit was rated Outstanding for patient responsiveness and the units provision of same sex accommodation was highlighted as an area of outstanding practice.

For disabled access information about this department, please see our DisabledGo accessibility guide.

Pilgrim Hospital, Boston

Pilgrim has a clinical decision unit with 25 inpatient beds (including five side rooms) plus a nurse-led seated assessment area for early assessment of patients with medical and surgical problems. Senior medical advice on site supports rapid decision making and early commencement of treatment.

The nurse-led ambulatory service supports prompt triage and assessment of GP referrals, working to an expanded role including cannulation and venepucture to allow immediate intervention, ensuring patients start treatment as quickly as possible.

For disabled access information about this department, please see our DisabledGo accessibility guide.

Grantham and District Hospital

Grantham CCU consists of six beds which are used flexibly for high dependency and coronary care patients. We also have the facility to ventilate and stabilise level three patients prior to transfer to other hospitals.

Our senior sister is Vicky Nelmes, supported by sisters Emma Walters and Kerrie Linger and service improvement lead staff nurse Elizabeth Howard. We have close links with our outreach staff – sisters Carole Hay and Linda Dunstan and Nicky Newton, critical care outreach / acute pain sister.

Our philosophy of care is:

  • To provide an environment that encourages holistic, individualised care which promotes the wellbeing of the patient
  • To involve the patient in their own care as soon as they are able and to promote independence
  • To recognise the needs and wishes of the patient, their families and significant others and to interact in a sensitive and non-judgmental way
  • To ensure the privacy and dignity of patients and respect their religious and cultural beliefs
  • To promote research-based practice and high standards of care
  • To work in a collaborative manner with the team, encouraging good communication and a seamless service
  • To appreciate and utilise the knowledge and skills of others, encouraging personal growth and development
  • To provide a supportive environment for students and encouragement to maximise their learning in the practice setting

For disabled access information about this department, please see our DisabledGo accessibility guide.

Critical care outreach and acute pain nurse specialists

Grantham and District Hospital is unique in that critical care outreach and acute pain is a combined service. The critical care outreach aspect is to provide support and advice to nursing staff and junior doctors caring for ward patients who are acutely ill and those recently discharged from the HDU.

This encompasses the three core objectives identified by the Department of Health for critical care outreach:

  • Avert admissions to critical care
  • Facilitates discharge from critical care
  • Share critical care skills

Our team also provides support and advice for inpatients with acute pain. We see patients pre and post-operative who require patient controlled pain relief or patient controlled epidural pain relief.

One of the post holders runs a clinic on Friday morning for patients with chronic pain. This clinic run alongside a consultant specialising in pain management, providing acupuncture and TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation).

A large part of our role involves education to teach both pre and post operative patients about pain control.

Nursing and medical staff both in informally at the bedside and formally in the classroom setting. We now run a care of the acutely ill ward patients course twice a year.

Visiting arrangements

We try to be as flexible as possible in respect to visiting but our main priority is the privacy and safety of our critically care patients so sometimes restrictions are put in place.

Key staff

Our senior sister is Vicky Nelmes, supported by sisters Emma Walters and Kerrie Linger and service improvement lead staff nurse Elizabeth Howard. We have close links with our outreach staff – sisters Carole Hay and Linda Dunstan.

Consultants