Worldwide Organization of Neurocritical Care: Results from the PRINCE Study Part 1

The PRINCE Study Investigators

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37 Scopus citations


Introduction: Neurocritical care focuses on the care of critically ill patients with an acute neurologic disorder and has grown significantly in the past few years. However, there is a lack of data that describe the scope of practice of neurointensivists and epidemiological data on the types of patients and treatments used in neurocritical care units worldwide. To address these issues, we designed a multicenter, international, point-prevalence, cross-sectional, prospective, observational, non-interventional study in the setting of neurocritical care (PRINCE Study). Methods: In this manuscript, we analyzed data from the initial phase of the study that included registration, hospital, and intensive care unit (ICU) organizations. We present here descriptive statistics to summarize data from the registration case report form. We performed the Kruskal–Wallis test followed by the Dunn procedure to test for differences in practices among world regions. Results: We analyzed information submitted by 257 participating sites from 47 countries. The majority of those sites, 119 (46.3%), were in North America, 44 (17.2%) in Europe, 34 (13.3%) in Asia, 9 (3.5%) in the Middle East, 34 (13.3%) in Latin America, and 14 (5.5%) in Oceania. Most ICUs are from academic institutions (73.4%) located in large urban centers (44% > 1 million inhabitants). We found significant differences in hospital and ICU organization, resource allocation, and use of patient management protocols. The highest nursing/patient ratio was in Oceania (100% 1:1). Dedicated Advanced Practiced Providers are mostly present in North America (73.7%) and are uncommon in Oceania (7.7%) and the Middle East (0%). The presence of dedicated respiratory therapist is common in North America (85%), Middle East (85%), and Latin America (84%) but less common in Europe (26%) and Oceania (7.7%). The presence of dedicated pharmacist is highest in North America (89%) and Oceania (85%) and least common in Latin America (38%). The majority of respondents reported having a dedicated neuro-ICU (67% overall; highest in North America: 82%; and lowest in Oceania: 14%). Conclusion: The PRINCE Study results suggest that there is significant variability in the delivery of neurocritical care. The study also shows it is feasible to undertake international collaborations to gather global data about the practice of neurocritical care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)172-179
Number of pages8
JournalNeurocritical Care
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • Critical care
  • Neurocritical care
  • Observational study
  • Outcomes
  • Prospective


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