Description of PACU
A post Anaesthesia Unit, abbreviated to PACU, is an area attached to the Operating Theatre, and is used for patients with a higher dependency of care post operatively, and is also used as a critical care area.
The staff in this department are highly trained and are charged with vital tasks for the care of the post operative or the critical care patient. These essential activities include:
- Airway management
- Monitoring Vital Signs
- Managing post operative pain
- Treating post operative nausea and vomiting
- Monitoring surgical sites for bleeding swelling haematoma, wound healing, redness etc.
PACU may need to be used when a serious life threatening event has occurred to a patient coming through the ED. This could range from a cardiac arrest, Road traffic Accident, to an accidental ingestion. In the event that there are no high dependency beds available a PACU Bed may be used.
Patients who have come from a ward bed for a surgical procedure or due to deteriorating condition on the ward will have their ward bed kept. Patients who have come to the unit from the ED department will not have a ward bed allocated until they are fit for transfer.
Requirements in the department are minimal. Hospital gowns are worn and relatives should take valuable possessions home.