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In the ICU, we treat patients who require intensive treatment. This could be after surgery, illness or an accident, for example. We monitor the patients day and night using various devices. We can help patients quickly when necessary.
When your loved one suddenly became very ill, they were taken to the ICU. Your loved one's body needs time to recover for the first few days. Sometimes, your loved one will be given medication to give the body rest.
Sometimes, your loved one may need to be moved to another hospital's ICU for proper treatment. Another hospital may be better suited to provide the treatment they need.
Doctors and nurses understand that you have questions about your loved one's situation. By law, they are not allowed to share patient information with everyone. Doctors and nurses can only share a patient's information with that patient's representative or contact person.
A patient in the ICU is often unable to advocate for themselves. This could be the case if they are in a coma, for example. If a patient cannot advocate for themself, they need a representative. A representative represents the patient's interests. A patient can have only one representative.
By law, the following persons may be representatives:
Other people cannot be representatives.
The doctors and nurses will inform the representative of the patient's condition. The representative can ask how the patient is doing at any time.
The representative will inform the patient's family and friends. The representative should ensure that there are not too many visitors each day.
The contact person is often also the representative, but does not have to be.
If there is no representative, someone else can serve as the patient's contact person. This could be a neighbour or friend of the patient, for example. A patient can have up to two contact persons.
The contact person can always call the ICU with questions. For example:
If necessary, doctors and nurses will inform the contact person of the patient's situation. The contact person will inform the patient's family and friends.
ICU visiting hours and rules can be found on our website: OLVG visiting hours.
What are you allowed to bring for the patient?
You do not need to bring clothing. The patient will receive special clothing from the hospital. Personal clothing is inconvenient because the patient is attached to tubes and equipment.
The family room is a room in the ICU where you can be with family and friends. You can also wait there while the nurse cares for your loved one. Sometimes, the doctor will talk to the family in a family room.
If your loved one is not doing well, you may want to stay nearby. Talk to the nurse to find out whether you can stay overnight. You cannot stay overnight in the family room without permission.
Children are allowed to visit but must be supervised by an adult. A visit to the ICU can be scary. Prepare the child well for their visit to the ICU. For tips on how to do so, visit: Child visiting the ICU (page is in Dutch, you can use the translation button).
There are rules in the ICU to ensure safety. Some rules are in place to ensure that patients in the ICU do not get an infection.
When the patient is in the ICU, the doctor will meet with the patient's representative as soon as possible. The doctor will discuss with the patient and representative how things are going at least once a week. The doctor will also tell you what they expect to happen. You will have more frequent meetings In the first few days.
For longer stays in the ICU, we try to arrange fixed contact persons at the ICU. This is often one physician and one nurse. You can read more about this at: Longer admission in the ICU (page is in Dutch, you can use the translation button).
Please talk to the nurse if you want an additional meeting with the doctor. The nurse can schedule an appointment for you. We recommend that you bring someone with you to the meeting: two can hear more than one.
Admission to the ICU may raise many questions or thoughts for you. Please contact our Spiritual Care department to speak with one of our spiritual caregivers. You can call the Spiritual Care department on +31 20 599 24 94. You can also ask the nurse to contact them for you.
For more information, visit: Spiritual care (page is in Dutch, you can use the translation button).
The doctor will determine if and when the patient can be moved to a nursing ward. The doctor or nurse will always inform the representative if the patient is being moved to a nursing ward.
If you have any questions after reading this information, the patient's representative or contact person can call the ICU at any time.
ICU, OLVG East
+31 20 599 30 07 (available 24/7)
ICU, OLVG West, route 26
+31 20 510 87 19 (available 24/7)