Critical Care

Comprehensive care for when your health is most at risk

Critical care (also called intensive care) provides complete, continuous care if you or a loved one has severe illness or injury.

Conditions commonly treated by critical care physicians include:

  • Heart, liver or kidney failure
  • Cancer
  • Influenza
  • Respiratory failure
  • Pneumonia
  • Traumatic injury

We collaborate with physicians from many specialties, including cardiology, oncology and transplant services, to deliver top-quality treatment to our sickest patients.

Our Approach to Critical Care

When your health and life are in the balance, we understand how frightening it can be. The IU Health Critical Care team will work tirelessly to help you recover from your major illness or injury.

Our board certified, fellowship-trained physicians offer around-the-clock care, continuous monitoring and life support options. When appropriate, we also offer enrollment in clinical trials.

Our team of physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, social workers and chaplains are specially trained to care for critically ill patients and their families. We strive to meet your physical, emotional and social needs. We'll do that through physical and respiratory therapy, counseling and access to community resources that can assist you further.

Why IU Health for Critical Care

As part of the only nationally ranked healthcare system in the state, IU Health Critical Care provides specialized treatment, advanced technology and a commitment to research.

Tertiary & Quaternary Critical Care

Tertiary and quaternary care refer to the third and fourth levels of care. They come after primary care (such as a primary care doctor) and secondary care (such as a specialist like a cardiologist). You need tertiary and quaternary care when you are in the hospital for a severe illness or injury.

Only a limited number of hospitals in the U.S. provide tertiary and quaternary critical care. IU Health is among them. We offer advanced, high-quality care by our specially trained critical care physicians. We also work with physicians from many specialties such as neuroscience, transplant, oncology and cardiology.

If you require tertiary or quaternary critical care, you’ll benefit from:

Access to Clinical Trials

Our Critical Care physicians and many other IU Health specialists perform research and offer you access to clinical trials.

Clinical trials involve receiving treatments, medicines or surgeries that are currently being studied. They may not yet be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

For patients with advanced or rare illnesses, these trials give hope when standard treatments fail. By participating, you also help improve treatments for future patients.

Coordinated Care

When you require quaternary care, you may have a rare or highly complicated illness or injury. Because of your condition, you require a team approach to care. This ensures all professionals involved in your care understand your needs and your treatment plan.

Our Critical Care physicians work closely with other specialists who are treating you to control symptoms and complications of your condition, including:

  • Respiratory failure
  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection

We support you before and after surgical procedures. We offer treatment and therapy at your bedside so your care is convenient and efficient.

Training & Research

As part of our partnership with IU School of Medicine, we are training the next generation of critical care physicians through our Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship Program.

IU Health physicians also perform their own research and are frequently published in various medical journals. Current research conducted by our Critical Care physicians includes topics such as:

  • Chronic pulmonary obstructive disease (COPD)
  • Delirium in critical care
  • Medical ethics
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Transplant immunology

Watch: What to Expect in Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

Related Diagnostic and Treatment Services for Critical Care

Patient Stories for Critical Care