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October 5, 2022

ICU doctors: Patient restraint, a recognized procedure, recommended and regulated both internationally and in Romania

Patient restraint (limitation of mobility) – mechanical (by binding) and/or chemical (sedation) – is a recognized procedure, recommended and regulated both internationally and in Romania, the representatives of the Romanian Society of Anesthesia and Intensive Care (SRATI) stated on Friday, in a press release.

“Regarding the debates in the public space related to the situation in the ICU-COVID ward in Sibiu, we would like to make the following clarifications: restraint (limitation of mobility) of the patient, either mechanical (by binding) and/or chemical (sedation) are recognized procedures, recommended both internationally and in Romania, and statistics show that between 50pct and 90pct of patients are immobilized by at least one method during their stay in intensive care. The use of these procedures aims to limit the movements of patients with organic or toxic delirium that can cause them involuntary injuries, can aggravate their pathology or cause collateral damage,” the same source said, according to Agerpres.

According to SRATI representatives, these procedures are performed on the advice of a doctor, with “dedicated” means to limit the additional discomfort or injury, and patients’ relatives should be informed about the purpose, application and benefits of the method.

“The claims that restraint procedures apply only in Romania are false, being made either knowingly or in complete ignorance. (…) Although Romania ranks last in Europe in terms of the percentage of GDP allocated to health and the number of doctors compared to the size of the population, our country is in the top third of the European countries with the lowest mortality per million inhabitants during the COVID-19 pandemic, a performance that is also due to the dedication of ICU professionals. Despite all this, it seems that it was enough that a person with very limited education, medical experience and credibility launched serious but unprecedented, totally unverified accusations, for many media channels to take them over and launch a virulent campaign of accusations against our colleagues from the ICU Sibiu and against doctors in Romania in general,” underscored the SRATI representatives.

SRATI demands the cessation of this campaign, in parallel with the continuation of the investigations for establishing the truth.

At the same time, SRATI calls for balance, responsibility, respect and open, critical and constructive dialogue, “in the interest of all.”

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