Innovative Partnership Between Intensive Care Unit Nurses and Therapists to Care for Patients With COVID-19

Author(s): Sara M. Reese, PhD, MPH, CIC, Jennifer Johnson, MSN, RNC-OB, Jennifer Edwards, MSPT, Michelle Oliveti, MSPT Susan Buszkiewic, BSN, RN, CCRN

Contact Hours 1.00

CERP A 1.00

Expires Feb 01, 2025

Topics: Collaboration, COVID-19, Staffing

Role: Staff

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

Added to Collection

Activity Summary

Required reading for all learners: Implicit Bias impacts patient outcomes

In response to the critical care needs of patients with COVID-19 and the emotional impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on ICU nurses, a level I trauma hospital deployed physical therapists (PTs) and occupational therapists (OT) to partner with ICU nurses to help provide daily care for severely ill patients with COVID-19. The group, known as the special operations (SO) team, had 3 specific objectives: 1) to aid the nurses caring for the high-acuity patients with COVID-19 in the ICU; (2) to make the available PTs and OTs more productive; and (3) to use the clinical expertise of PTs and OTs to improve outcomes among patients with COVID-19. This article describes the implementation and positive patient, nursing, PT and OT outcomes of the SO program.


  • Describe the development and implementation of a special team of therapists who aided ICU nurses during the first critical wave of COVID.
  • Analyze the effectiveness of the team through hours saved for nurses as well as number of activities performed per day over time.
  • Describe the perception of the team through comments and quotes from both the nursing staff and therapists.

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

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


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