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Executing Evidence-Based Progressive Mobility in the ICU

Part of AACN Critical Care Webinar Series

Presenter(s): Brenda T Pun, RN,MSN,NP; Ms Cheryl Esbrook

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Webinar Summary

While advancements in medical management of patients experiencing respiratory failure have improved their survival rate, neuromuscular and neurocognitive impairments can result in long-term deficits to their functional performance. Increasingly, the critical care community is emphasizing early, aggressive physical and occupational therapy — including progressive mobility — to improve these patients’ outcomes.

However, development and implementation of an early progressive mobility program can be challenging for the interdisciplinary team. This webinar will discuss the long-term outcomes of critical illness survivors, evidence surrounding the importance of early progressive mobility in the ICU and common obstacles faced when creating or improving these programs.


  • Outline the neuromuscular and neurocognitive complications ICU survivors often face.
  • Describe the evidence supporting early physical and occupational therapy in the ICU.
  • Discuss the benefits and common concerns when implementing an interdisciplinary progressive mobility programs in various settings.

About the Presenters

Brenda T Pun, RN,MSN,NP

Brenda T Pun, RN,MSN,NP

An advanced practice nurse with a special interest in critical care, Brenda Pun conducts and participates in patient-oriented health services research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. As a program clinical manager in the Vanderbilt Coordinating Center, she is involved in studies, grant writing, data collection, analysis of data and communication of results, with an emphasis on delirium and sedation in the critically ill. Ms. Pun holds both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing. She is a highly regarded nursing and medical educator, teaching at local, regional and national conferences and providing research consultation to hospitals and organizations throughout the U.S.

Ms Cheryl Esbrook

Ms Cheryl Esbrook

Cheryl Esbrook is a Board Certified occupational therapist focusing on critical care patient populations at the University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC). In addition to evaluating and treating a wide variety of ICU patients, she mentors occupational/physical therapists in this specialized area, serves as fieldwork coordinator for UCMC’s Therapy Services department and collaborates with facilities across the country to improve or begin early mobilization programs. Ms. Esbrook has been published in The Lancet and Critical Care Medicine, and has presented at national and international conferences for the American Physical Therapy Association, American Occupational Therapy Association and American Thoracic Society. She also works with the Society of Critical Care Medicine as a coach in their Paragon program, aimed at improving processes and care in ICUs.

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


This activity has been reviewed by the Nurse Planner. It has been determined that the material presented here shows no bias. Approval of a continuing education activity does not imply endorsement by AACN or ANCC of any commercial products displayed or discussed in conjunction with the activity.


The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s (ANCC's) Commission on Accreditation. ANCC Provider Number 0012 (60 min contact hour). AACN has been approved as a provider of continuing education in nursing by the California State Board of Nursing California Provider number CEP01036 contact hours (50 min contact hour).

AACN programming meets the standards for most states that require mandatory continuing education contact hours for license and/or certification renewal. AACN recommends consulting with your state board of nursing or credentialing organization before submitting CE to fulfill continuing education requirements.