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Advancing Pediatric Critical Care: The PICU Innovation Accelerator at Cincinnati Children’s

Daniel Loeb, MD, MEd, Matthew Zackoff MD, MEd and Maya Dewan, MD, MPH

The Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at Cincinnati Children’s has earned global recognition for its proficiency in employing innovative strategies and technologies to enhance outcomes for critically ill children. In 2022, the PICU Innovation Accelerator was established to further amplify this distinctive expertise by pushing the boundaries of existing technologies to improve the outcomes for the sickest children

This year marked a significant milestone for the PICU Innovation Accelerator, as it secured two substantial grants totaling over $4 million from the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality. The first grant, called the Situation Awareness Incorporating MUltidisciplinary Teams Reduce Arrest In the PICU (SAMURAI PICU) Study, will spread the work done to reduce cardiac arrests here at Cincinnati Children’s to five other children’s hospitals around the country. Working with the team at each hospital’s PICU and families who have experienced care in the PICU, this study will adapt our cardiac arrest prevention bundle to each local environment.

Partnering with the PICU teams at each hospital and engaging families with firsthand experience in PICU care, the SAMURAI PICU Study utilizes a predictive tool derived from Cincinnati’s electronic health record to identify high-risk patients. Interprofessional huddles are employed to prepare for potential deterioration, and bedside signs are posted to label high-risk patients, ensuring widespread awareness of the care plan. Through innovative educational methods, ongoing support is provided to these teams as they enhance their skills in predicting and preventing cardiac arrests in pediatric patients.

Ultimately, we aspire to diminish cardiac arrests and enhance outcomes for critically ill children in the five participating hospitals, mirroring the success achieved in Cincinnati. Subsequently, the goal is to expand this approach to over 50 hospitals with the support of future grant funding. The crucial backing from Kindervelt enables the implementation of cutting-edge technological approaches, impacting not only the children in Cincinnati but also fostering positive change nationwide.

Advancing Pediatric Critical Care: The PICU Innovation Accelerator At Cincinnati Children’s
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