Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Patients' experiences in the intensive care unit (ICU) can enhance or impair their subsequent recovery. Improving patient and family experiences on the ICU is an important part of providing high quality care. There is little evidence to guide how to do this in a South Asian critical care context. This study addresses this gap by exploring the experiences of critically ill patients and their families in ICUs in Bangladesh and India. We elicit suggestions for improvements from patients, families and staff and highlight examples of practices that support person-centred care. This multi-site hospital ethnography was carried out in five ICUs in government hospitals in Bangladesh and India, selected using purposive sampling. Qualitative data were collected using non-participant observation and semi-structured interviews and analysed using reflexive thematic analysis. A total of 108 interviews were conducted with patients, families, and ICU staff. Over 1000 hours of observation were carried out across the five study sites. We identified important mediators of patient and family experience that span many different aspects of care. Factors that promote person-centred care include access to ICU for families, support for family involvement in care delivery, clear communication with patients and families, good symptom management for patients, support for rehabilitation, and measures to address the physical, environmental and financial needs of the family. This study has generated a list of recommendations that can be used by policy makers and practitioners who wish to implement person-centred principles in the ICU.

Original publication




Journal article


PLOS Glob Public Health

Publication Date