As a commitment to continuous improvement for the critically ill, the Department of Critical Care Medicine actively promotes high quality research

  • We are constantly attempting to improve patient care; this is an ongoing process. With modern intensive care most patients now survive but there are some conditions which remain very difficult to treat. In order to improve the care for every patient we need to carry out research in ways which will help determine which treatments are most effective, both immediately and long term.
  • The Treaty of Waitangi acts as a mandate for the good health of all New Zealanders and health research is an integral part of this. Research involves nurses, doctors, pharmacists, dieticians, and physiotherapists.
  • Maori will be offered the same opportunities as non-Maori to participate in research and benefit from the results. Achieving a Nation that manifests equity and fairness will benefit the whole of Aotearoa and the  right to collective wellbeing
  • Intensive care studies can include any and every aspect of the patients’ critical care journey: e.g. life-threatening infections (“sepsis”), traumatic brain injury, nutrition when unable to eat normally, artificial ventilation (“lung injury or illness”), resuscitation drugs and intravenous fluids, antibiotics, sedation, treatment for bleeding risks after trauma, and  many observational audits/studies examining current practice.  
  • You may be approached by a doctor or research nurse asking if you think your relative/whānau member /close friend would possibly likely participate in a research study.  Observational studies or audit of practice, which do not identify individuals, may not always require consent.
  • Some studies compare two commonly used drugs or treatments, and the drug/treatment should start as      soon as possible.  For these the New Zealand Health and Disability Ethics Committee may have approved   enrolling before asking consent, but with the patient or their relative/friend /whānau being approached      with information later (as soon as appropriate).  If this is the case, we would ask consent to continue participation in the study, for data collection and (often) telephone follow-up.
  • Participation in research is voluntary. The care your relative/whānau/friend receives will not be affected whether or not they or you choose participation in a research study. They may withdraw at any time without affecting current and future care. Privacy will be protected with most data used in studies de-identified and he/she won’t be identified in any reports.
  • All research in this Department has prior approval from New Zealand Health and Disability Ethics Committee, the Auckland DHB Research Committee and Maori Research Review and Ministry of Health.
  • If you or your relative/friend/whānau wish to talk to someone outside the department, you can contact an independent health and disability advocate. Tel: 0800 555 050 ; email  advocacy@advocacy.org.nz
  • If you require Māori cultural support please talk to your whānau in the first instance. Alternatively you may contact the administrator for He Kamaka Waiora (Māori Health Team) by telephoning 09 4868324 ext 23243                                                If you have any questions or complaints about a research study you may contact the Auckland and Waitematā District Health Boards Maori Research Committee or Advisor, tel. 09 4868920 ext 3204
  • The Department of Critical Care Medicine is affiliated to the Australia and New Zealand Intensive Care Society Clinical Trials Group, and to the University of Auckland.
  • We welcome your comments and questions. Please ask the receptionist or your relative/whānau/friend’s nurse to speak to one of the research nurses in the Department of Critical Care Medicine. You can also discuss specific studies with your relative/whanau member’s intensive care doctor.

Current research studies

Our current research portfolio:

  • BLING III Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A randomised controlled trial of continuous beta-lactam infusion compared with intermittent beta-lactam dosing in critically ill patients.  More information can be found here

  • BEST-FLUIDS Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    Study looking into the best fluid for patients who have received a renal transplant.

  • PATCH Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    Pre-hospital treatment with tranexamic acid for severely injured patients at risk of acute traumatic coagulopathy.
    More information can be found here.

  • PLUS Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    Saline vs Plasma-Lyte for critically ill patients in ICU.
    More information can be found in the participant information leaflet and also the study protocol.

  • REMAP-CAP Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    Research study looking into the best way to treat infection in the lungs (pneumonia).
    More information can be found here.

  • TEAM Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    The TEAM study will test whether early activity and mobilisation is better in a large randomised controlled trial of 750 ICU patients. Eligible patients will be randomised to receive either early or standard  (usual care) activity and mobilisation.

  • TAME Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A study comparing two different blood levels of carbon dioxide in patients who have had a cardiac arrest.  It may be that having a higher carbon dioxide level in the blood may be the best way to reduce brain damage after cardiac arrest, however we need to do a study to show if this is true.

  • BALANCE Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    This study is to determine whether, in critically ill patients with bloodstream infection, 7 days antibiotic treatment achieves the same outcomes compared to 14 days antibiotic treatment.

  • LUCID Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A Study comparing the conventional approach to control high blood glucose (‘sugar in the blood’) to a more liberal approach for patients with pre-existing diabetes.

Previous research results

Results of our previous reearch can be found below:

  • POLAR Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A study looking into the effect of sustained prophylactic hypothermia in severe traumatic brain injury.  Published results can be found here.

  • TARGET Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A study comparing the energy dense versus routine enteral nutrition.  Published results can be found here.

  • ICU-ROX Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    This is a study looking at two approaches to oxyen therapy in patients on a breathing machine. Results are due to be published in the near future.

  • STARRT-AKI Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    Looking at the timing to initiate renal replacement therapy for patients with severe acute kidney injury. More information can be found here.

  • SPICE III Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A comparison of two sedation treatments in intensive care: dexmedotomidine verus usual care sedation.  Published results from the NEJM can be found here.

  • ADRENAL Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

    A study to see how effectively hydrocortisone works in patients with severe infection and shock.  Published results in the NEJM can be found here.

  • ART 123 Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.
  • PHARLAP Page 1 Copy 3 Created with Sketch.