I am seeking some help regarding finding criteria for discharge or step-down from ICU to a non-critical care unit. I have hit up the usual suspects for nursing research, but I haven't found what I'm looking for yet. In brief, a family friend is hospitalized in an ICU and was recently transferred from a large hospital to a smaller one. The staff at the smaller hospital is telling his family that he'll probably be moved to a regular semi-private room on a non-critical care unit within a few days. He does have a trach, no speaking valve, and while he is conscious at times he is not able to perform intentional movements as would be needed to operate a call bell. He has been off a vent for 1 week, and needs suction several times per day. (Also has vac dressing, PICC, and a PEG).
While I've never worked in an ICU I have worked in a step-down unit with constant visual contact with up to 8 patients, and a med-surg floor focused on trauma and neuro. I would never have imagined taking a patient who could not speak or signal for help and putting them into a normal closed room, but that seems to be what his family is being told.
I know hospitals and ICUs differ, but there must be a set of guidelines or criteria for moving a patient from ICU to step-down, or from ICU straight to a med-surg floor.
I no longer work in a hospital so I don't have access to the in-house guidelines that I used to.
Any help in terms of finding articles or even a sample set of guidelines would be most helpful. He was all ready to be moved earlier today when his wife told the charge nurse that she was not happy with the prospect of her husband being on a med-surg floor, so he's in place for another day.
Thanks very much.