Origins of ICU
The ICU's roots can be traced back to the Monitoring Unit of critical patients through nurse Florence Nightingale. The Crimean War began in
1854 when Britain, France and Turkey declared war on Russia. Because of the lack of critical care and the high rate of infection, there was a high mortality rate of hospitalised soldiers, reaching as high as 40% of the deaths recorded during the war. Nightingale and 38 other volunteers had to leave for the Fields of Scurati, and took their "critical care protocol" with them.
Upon arriving, and practicing, the mortality rate fell to 2%.
Nightingale contracted typhoid, and returned in 1856 from the war. A school of nursing dedicated to her was formed in 1859 in England. The school was recognised for its professional value and technical calibre, receiving prizes throughout the British government. The school of nursing was established in Saint Thomas Hospital, as a one year course, and was given to doctors. It used theoretical and practical lessons, as opposed to purely academic lessons. Nightingale's work, and the school, paved the way for intensive care medicine.