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Mastering Intensive Care

Mar 19, 2020

In the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic, this episode focuses on the pandemic planning all ICUs should be doing - if they haven’t already been overwhelmed.

This week a Working Group of 30 colleagues released the Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society (ANZICS) COVID-19 Guidelines. This episode features the Chair of that Working Group, A/Prof Steve McGloughlin. Steve is an intensivist, an infectious diseases physician, and the Director of the ICU at the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, one of the largest Australian ICUs.

In this conversation, Steve talks about:

  • How he is “hoping for the best and preparing for the worst”
  • His confidence in the Australian Intensive Care system
  • How and why the ANZICS COVID-19 Guidelines were developed
  • Measures for increasing ICU capacity
  • His belief that intensive care can be offered to all who might benefit in the pandemic
  • The need to communicate more in a crisis to ease anxiety
  • The value of asking “Are you confident we know what we are doing as a team”?
  • PPE being safe as long as the equipment is used properly
  • His ICU developing the role of a PPE monitor
  • The hierarchy for negative pressure room use
  • Splitting teams into 3 so workers are either on, on call, or totally off
  • What the guidelines recommend about high flow nasal oxygen, non-invasive ventilation & ECMO
  • The lack of evidence for medications and COVID-19
  • Looking after our teams by ensuring a degree of confidence
  • How he will deal with the social isolation
  • The ways we might obtain additional intensive care trained healthcare workers
  • His thoughts on older health care workers and their risks

If you are in a place where the number of COVID-19 patients are ramping up, I really think this is a must listen episode.


We are all in this together.


Andrew Davies




About the Mastering Intensive Care podcast: The podcast is aimed to inspire and empower you to bring your best self to the intensive care unit, through conversations with thought-provoking guests. The hope is you’ll glean insights to move you closer towards being the best and most human healthcare professionals you can be, so you can make the most valuable contribution to your patient’s lives.




Links related to Steve McGloughlin

A/Prof Steve McGloughlin

A/Prof Steve McGloughlin on LinkedIn

Alfred Intensive Care Unit


Links to resources (in order of mentioning)

WHO situation reports on COVID-19

ANZICS COVID-19 guidelines (Version 1)


JAMA Network Video “Coronavirus in Italy - Reports From The Front Lines”


Links related to Mastering Intensive Care podcast

Mastering Intensive Care podcast - Episode 47 with Matt Morgan

Mastering Intensive Care podcast - Episode 58 on "COVID-19 - We are all in this together"

Mastering Intensive Care podcast

Mastering Intensive Care page on Facebook

Mastering Intensive Care at Life In The Fast Lane

Andrew Davies on Twitter: @andrewdavies66

Andrew Davies on Instagram: @andrewdavies66

Andrew Davies on LinkedIn

Email Andrew Davies

Audio Producer Chris Burke

Burke Sound & Media