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The REcovery FoLlowing Intensive CarE Treatment (REFLECT) research programme is funded by a grant awarded by the NIHR Research for Patient Benefit scheme.


A substantial number of patients discharged from Intensive Care Units (ICUs) subsequently die without leaving hospital. It is unclear how many of these deaths are preventable. Ward-based management following discharge from ICU is an area that patients and healthcare staff are concerned about. The primary aim of REFLECT (Recovery Following Intensive Care Treatment) is to develop an intervention plan to reduce in-hospital mortality rates in patients who have been discharged from ICU.

REFLECT is a multicentre mixed methods exploratory study examining ward care delivery to adult patients discharged from ICU. The study will be made up of four sub-studies. Medical notes of patients who were discharged from intensive care and subsequently died will be examined using a Retrospective Case Records Review (RCRR) technique. Patients and their relatives will be interviewed about their post-ICU care, including relatives of patients who died in hospital following ICU discharge. Staff involved in the care of patients post-ICU discharge will be interviewed about the care of this patient group. The medical records of patients who survived their post-ICU stay will also be reviewed using the RCRR technique. The analyses of the sub-studies will be both descriptive and use a modified grounded theory approach to identify emerging themes. The evidence generated in these four sub-studies will form the basis of the intervention development, which will take place through stakeholder and clinical expert meetings.