Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, critically ill patients have been hospitalized and isolated from their families and loved ones. In many hospitals, the palliative care team has been charged with maintaining communication between the critical care team and their patients’ families. Dr. Gretchen Schwarze and her team along with Dr. Toby Campbell created the Best Case/Worst Case: ICU (COVID-19) communication toolkit to assist separated families and to help them develop an understanding of their loved one’s illness, prognostic awareness and the range of possible outcomes.
The Best Case/Worst Case: ICU (COVID-19) toolkit helps palliative care clinicians and other clinicians navigate daily conversations with patients’ families. It also informs critical care clinicians about the lives of the patients they are caring for and supports families who are absent from the patient’s bedside and isolated at home. The toolkit can help critical care providers understand the patient’s overall trajectory when there is a high rate of care-team member transition.