Studies in Tanzania have reported that many hospitals in the country have no intensive care unit (ICU) where critically ill patients could be managed thus critically ill patients are cared for with other non-critical patients. The aim of this study is to describe nurses and physicians' experience of caring critically ill patients in the general wards at the Regional hospital.
A descriptive qualitative design was used. Purposeful sampling method was used to enroll 10 nurses and 5 physicians working in various departments at the regional hospital. Using semi-structured interview guide, 15 interviews were conducted. Qualitative content analysis framework guided analysis of data.
Three (3) major themes emerged from the data of nurses and physicians' experiences of providing care to critically ill patients at the regional hospital. These included; being present and staying close, being powerless and lacking caring abilities.
Nurses and physicians at regional hospital face multifaceted experiences when caring critically ill patients. Lack of equipment supplies and medicine, lack of expertise in caring for critically ill patients and lack of a special room to care for the critically ill patients, made them feel powerless in providing appropriate and effective care to critically ill patients.