Managing ICU surge during the COVID-19 crisis: rapid guidelines

Intensive Care Med. 2020 Jul;46(7):1303-1325. doi: 10.1007/s00134-020-06092-5. Epub 2020 Jun 8.


Given the rapidly changing nature of COVID-19, clinicians and policy makers require urgent review and summary of the literature, and synthesis of evidence-based guidelines to inform practice. The WHO advocates for rapid reviews in these circumstances. The purpose of this rapid guideline is to provide recommendations on the organizational management of intensive care units caring for patients with COVID-19 including: planning a crisis surge response; crisis surge response strategies; triage, supporting families, and staff.

Keywords: COVID-19; Critical care; Guideline; Pandemics; Surge capacity; Triage.

Publication types

  • Practice Guideline
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus*
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology
  • Coronavirus Infections / therapy*
  • Critical Care / standards
  • Equipment and Supplies, Hospital
  • Health Care Rationing / standards
  • Health Workforce
  • Humans
  • Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional / prevention & control
  • Intensive Care Units / organization & administration*
  • Intensive Care Units / standards
  • Pandemics*
  • Personal Protective Equipment
  • Pneumonia, Viral / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia, Viral / therapy*
  • Respiration, Artificial / instrumentation
  • Respiration, Artificial / standards
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Triage