Twenty five years ago, St. Louis County’s only Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) began caring for patients with a four-bed unit at St. John’s Mercy. Today, Mercy Children’s Hospital’s PICU has grown to 16 beds and is still the only one in St. Louis County to care for infants, children and teens from two days old to 18 years old.
The PICU cares for children with varying needs, from those requiring close post-operative care related to surgery to those who are critically ill and require a one-to-one nurse-patient ratio.
Over the years, the need for quality care for young patients has grown. The unit originally had only one pediatric critical care physician and now boasts three, known as intensivists. It is staffed by experienced pediatric registered nurses who are all Pediatric Advanced Life Support-trained. A few of the nurses in the PICU today were members of the original staff and many others work elsewhere within the hospital.
Recently renovated, Mercy Children’s Hospital PICU is designed to promote family involvement with patients. Within each of the private rooms in the PICU, there is a refrigerator for family