Is high dependency the same as intensive care? - Abafields Home Care
intensive care treatment of patient in a hospital setting

Is high dependency the same as intensive care?

Whilst high dependency patients do require a very high level of care, they are not in a critical condition like those that you may find on an intensive care ward.

High dependency care and intensive care do have a lot of similarities, but there are some key differences too.

What are the differences between high dependency care and intensive care?

High dependency care and intensive care help those with serious or complex care requirements.

Both types of care are very intensive and provide help to those who may struggle with a wide range of daily tasks or require a high level of medical monitoring.

There are however some key differences between the two types of care.

Whether high dependency care or intensive care is required will usually depend on how critical the patient’s condition is.

Whilst both types of care offer round-the-clock care, intensive care is usually provided when a patient is in a critical condition with multiple organ failure.

In comparison, high dependency care offers a similar level of care with slightly reduced monitoring to patients who are no longer in a critical condition.

Individuals with a wide range of conditions could benefit from high dependency care, providing that they are in a stable condition, including those that:

  • Have a chronic illness.
  • Have single organ failure.
  • Have a serious infection.
  • Need help breathing.
  • Are recovering from surgery.
  • Have a physical disability.
  • Have dementia.

In a hospital setting, high dependency units bridge the gap between intensive care and the general ward.

Often, people will move from intensive care to high dependency care once they are no longer in a critical condition.

High dependency units still offer a high level of medical observation and care, but the ratio of nurses to patients is less.

In an intensive care ward, there is usually one nurse per patient, compared to one nurse to every two patients in a high dependency unit.

What does high dependency care involve?

People that require high dependency care will usually require help with most aspects of their day-to-day life.

They may also require a high level of monitoring and specialist medical care such as:

  • Ventilation
  • Feeding regimes like PEG or dysphagia.
  • Tracheostomy care.
  • Catheter or colostomy care.

High dependency care is carried out by specialist nurses who have been trained in high dependency care.

The role and responsibilities of a high dependency nurse will vary from one patient to the next depending on their exact requirements.

As well as specialist medical care and monitoring, some of the tasks a high dependency carer may carry out on a day-to-day basis include:

  • Help with mobility.
  • Meal preparation.
  • Medication management.
  • Help with personal hygiene.
  • Companionship
  • Shopping and errands.

High dependency care at home

Those that require high dependency care but wish to stay living at home can do so with the help of a specialist high dependency live-in carer.

Here at Abafields Home Care, we have a team of highly qualified and professional high dependency home carers who provide high dependency care at home to individuals in Bury, Bolton, and the surrounding areas of Greater Manchester.

For more information about our home care service services or to discuss your requirements in detail, give our team a call on 0161 804 5060.