Nursing Diaries - Intensive Care Unit
Posted on: November 4, 2004
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Sneak behind the scenes where the real stories of nurses at Massachusetts General Hospital and New York Presbyterian Hospital are revealed. Witness everything from medical emergencies and long-term treatments; learn what it takes to be at the emotional core of a major medical facility. Three one-hour episodes ("The Rookies," "Pediatrics" and "In the O.R.") capture the modern-day heroes in action as the nurses treat their patients. A vital part of successful medical care, nurses tend to the most intimate needs of their patients and provide the skilled care and compassion that is essential to recovery. While the patients' stories drive the plot, the nurses are the central characters: Their actions, reflections and interactions with members of the medical team provide the pulse for each episode.
The first part, "The Rookies," gives an unusually good sense of the value of highly skilled nursing. It shows nurses working in three intensive care units at Mass. General: the cardiac surgical intensive care unit (CSICU), the neonatal ICU (NICU), and the surgical ICU (SICU). The filmmakers focus on only one patient in each unit, which allows them to show a broader range of things that nurses do for patients, and more of the relationships that nurses develop with patients and families. The episode is compelling and moving but does not resort to the cheesy directorial tricks or heroic hyperbole that some health care documentaries use to try to pump up the action. Consistent with this serious approach, we are not invited into the nurses' personal lives.