Abstract

The COVID-19 outbreak has led to 80,409 diagnosed cases and 3,012 deaths in mainland China based on the data released on March 4, 2020. Approximately 3.2% of patients with COVID-19 required intubation and invasive ventilation at some point in the disease course. Providing best practices regarding intubation and ventilation for an overwhelming number of patients with COVID-19 amid an enhanced risk of cross-infection is a daunting undertaking. The authors presented the experience of caring for the critically ill patients with COVID-19 in Wuhan. It is extremely important to follow strict self-protection precautions. Timely, but not premature, intubation is crucial to counter a progressively enlarging oxygen debt despite high-flow oxygen therapy and bilevel positive airway pressure ventilation. Thorough preparation, satisfactory preoxygenation, modified rapid sequence induction, and rapid intubation using a video laryngoscope are widely used intubation strategies in Wuhan. Lung-protective ventilation, prone position ventilation, and adequate sedation and analgesia are essential components of ventilation management.

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