The Progressive Care Programme (invasive ventilation weaning programme) was initiated in 1992 and since then more than 600 patients have been referred from other centres throughout the United Kingdom. Patients who are failing to wean from invasive ventilation despite optimal conventional therapy on Critical Care units are referred to this service.

A multidisciplinary team approach is employed to optimise therapy, and non-invasive ventilation is often used to allow a graded withdrawal of invasive ventilatory support. A holistic approach to weaning patients from invasive ventilation by a specialist MDT has led to good results. The service has been cited as a model for the future provision of Critical Care step down programmes and has been demonstrated to be cost-effective compared to the cost of ongoing ventilation within a Critical Care environment.


Who to refer?

We are happy to receive referrals on any patient who is failing to wean from mechanical ventilation. Transfer to the RSSC may take place once the patient is felt to be medically stable and is free from other organ support. We would recommend early liaison with the RSSC, particularly if longer-term non-invasive ventilation might be anticipated, for example in those with neuromuscular disorders.