The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2006 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

THE STEER VENTILATOR WEANING PROTOCOL: SIX YEARS LATER

Julie Emerick RRT, Kori Menzies RRT, Richard Ford BS RRT FARRC, Carol Mihailuk RRT, Timothy Morris MD. University of California, San Diego Medical Center, San Diego California

Background: We have previously reported our experience with the STEER weaning protocol which was implemented at UCSD medical center in the latter part of 2000. The early gains included a 10% reduction in mean hours; a 6 % reduction in median hours and; 75-80% MD compliance. In 2002 the protocol was revised and re-named STEER which is an acronym which defines the steps of the weaning assessment process as: Screen, Trial, Exercise, Evaluate, and Report.

Methods:  To determine the number of patients ventilated and the duration of mechanical ventilation, data was extracted from the CliniVision RCMIS in which the RCP's entered ventilator data manually using point of care devices. Period of data collection included January 1998 through April 2006. Mean durations of mechanical ventilation were determined prior to and after implementation of STEER.

Results:  Pre protocol ventilator average duration 3 years prior to STEER = 147 hours. Post protocol ventilator average duration 5 years after implementation 127 hours. This represents a 13.6% decrease in mean duration of ventilation per patient



Conclusions: Since June 2001 over 850,000 hours of ventilation have been provided. Using the direct variable labor and supply costs of managing ventilator patients, the 13.6% reduction in duration per patient is associated with an estimated $471,648 over the 5 year period post protocols. Future enhancements to minimize the duration of mechanical ventilation at UCSD include:



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