Critical care unit in Idaho Falls, Idaho

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When a medical situation leads to a stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) for you or your loved one, it causes concern. You want assurance that you have access to lifesaving support from medical specialists, advanced technology and the latest procedures.

Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center (EIRMC) is designated as a Level I Intensive Care Unit (ICU). This designation means we are able to provide the highest level of intensive care for all cardiology, neurology and trauma patients. Our experienced critical care doctors (intensivists) provide round-the-clock care for people with many types of life-threatening illnesses and injuries.

Complete critical care

While your condition may require advanced critical care, our treatment plan has an interdisciplinary approach. This means we may involve resources beyond medical treatment. When admitted to our ICU, you'll have access to medical consultants, social services, spiritual support and experts in various disciplines.

We have specialized critical care for a range of needs and ages, including:

  • Burn ICU — Burn injuries may need a multispecialty approach for recovery. Ongoing care may involve hyperbaric chamber time, plastic surgery, reconstructive surgery and rehab. We work to help your loved ones return to their routine as much as possible.
  • Level III Neonatal Intensive Care (NICU) — This specially trained team cares for and monitors sick newborns and infants born prematurely. Our NICU cares for newborns as young as 23 weeks gestation, 24/7.
  • Pediatric intensive care (PICU) — Our pediatric critical care team treats children from newborns to 17 years old.

Reasons you may need an ICU

There are many different reasons one may need to be admitted to the ICU. Some situations that may cause ICU admission include:

ICU visitor policy

We know you are worried while your loved one is in our ICU. Rest assured, their care is our number one priority.

Sometimes, to protect your loved one’s care and recovery, it may be necessary to restrict the number of visitors in your loved one’s room and/or the length of visitation. Additionally, depending upon your loved one's injury or illness, visitors may be required to wear PPE (personal protective equipment) such as gowns and gloves.

During respiratory season (Nov. 1 - March 31), children younger than age 12 may not visit. At other times, children younger than 14 years old are not allowed.

Do not visit if you have respiratory, COVID, or flu symptoms (cough, fever, runny nose, sore throat, body aches).

Special circumstances, such as end-of-life care, may necessitate an exemption to this policy. Please speak with your loved one’s nurse.

Life support choices

Life support replaces or supports a failing body function. In treatable or curable illnesses, we offer life support as a temporary measure until the body can resume normal functions. But in situations where a cure is not possible, life support may prolong a terminal condition.

We want to explain various life support terminology and measures the intensivist-led team may need to address with you. One option is the decision to forego life support, a profoundly personal decision. It is essential to talk to your physician regarding the risk and benefits of each option. All life support measures are optional treatments.

We have included information below that may help you in making your decision. Life support terminology includes:

  • Do-not-resuscitate order (DNR) — Written by your physician, a DNR order instructs health care providers not to attempt cardiopulmonary resuscitation in case of cardiac or respiratory arrest. Under these circumstances, our critical care team will not administer CPR to a patient with a valid DNR order.
  • Do-not-intubate (DNI) — A DNI order is written by your physician instructing health care providers not to attempt to place an endotracheal tube in your airway in the event of acute or impending respiratory failure.
  • Palliative care — Palliative care is a type of comfort care focusing on the physical, psychological and spiritual needs of the patient. A type of comfort care, it treats illness symptoms when a cure is not possible.
  • Hospice care — Another form of comfort care, hospice does not focus on a cure. It is a holistic approach that respects and takes a patient's wishes, values, beliefs and culture into account at the end of life.

Commonly used life support measures

There are a variety of measures to choose from for life support. Our specialists choose measures based on the patient's illness and ability to bear the treatment, including:

  • Defibrillation
  • Vasopressors
  • Artificial nutrition and hydration (tube feeding)
  • Intravenous (IV) feeding
  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Dialysis
  • Pacemakers