Clinical review: The role of the intensivist and the rapid response team in nosocomial end-of-life care

  • A.K. H
  • D. J
  • 6


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • N/A


    Citations of this article.


In-hospital end-of-life care outside the ICU is a new and increasing aspect of practice for intensive care physicians in countries where rapid response teams have been introduced. As more of these patients die from withdrawal or withholding of artificial life support, determining whether a patient is dying or not has become as important to intensivists as the management of organ support therapy itself. Intensivists have now moved to making such decisions in hospital wards outside the boundaries of their usual closely monitored environment. This strategic change may cause concern to some intensivists; however, as custodians of the highest technology area in the hospital, intensivists are by necessity involved in such processes. Now, more than ever before, intensive care clinicians must consider the usefulness of key concepts surrounding nosocomial death and dying and the importance and value of making a formal diagnosis of dying in the wards. In this article, we assess the conceptual background, reference points, challenges and implications of these emerging aspects of intensive care medicine. © 2013 BioMed Central Ltd.

Author-supplied keywords

  • *intensive care
  • *terminal care
  • death
  • dying
  • family
  • health care personnel
  • hospital admission
  • human
  • intensive care unit
  • intensivist
  • leadership
  • living will
  • nursing home
  • priority journal
  • review

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in


  • Hilton A.K.

  • Jones D.

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free