Critical Condition

Channel5 Critical Condition

University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust is the sole focus of a new documentary Critical Condition, which takes an up-close, unflinching and immersive look at the critical moments when patients in a life-threatening condition come through the hospital's doors.

Filmed at Royal Stoke University Hospital during autumn 2018, Critical Condition showcases the relentless fast pace of the department's daily workload in a way never seen before on television.

The gripping series, filmed with extraordinary access to the hospital's Major Trauma Centre and other specialist emergency departments, charts the vital interventions, actions and medical strategies that UHNM's specialist consultants and their teams experience while delivering immediate life-saving care.

Each episode provides an insight into the decision making and actions of our caring and dedicated clinicians, when dealing with the daily pressures of gravely ill or seriously injured patients.

RSUH is recognised for its expertise in extreme trauma and is one of only 22 specialist centres in the UK; with patients frequently arriving by air ambulance, from across the region and further afield in North Wales, to receive treatment following major accidents and for life-threatening conditions.

Throughout the series, the types of trauma seen vary immensely with patients being treated for everything from multiple stab wounds, to cardiac arrest, discovering they have a brain tumour, hitting a wall in a motorcycle sidecar at over 100 miles per hour, to a man suffering horrendous injuries due to a machete attack.

Reflecting the emotionally draining fast-paced daily workload, the series puts viewers right at the heart of this life and death battle. It's a powerful, moving and ultimately awe-inspiring look at how our staff work to save the lives of their sickest and most injured patients.

With only the consultants and their teams talking on camera and discussions with the patients and their relatives, Critical Condition is an unprecedented and emotive first-hand glimpse behind the scenes.

About Us – Critical Condition – Episode 1

Episode 1 - "You are fighting against the clock…"

Every day, our medical staff at the Royal University Hospital in Stoke take difficult life and death decisions.  Time is a precious commodity when you are critically ill. And for all the patients in this episode, the speed of the decisions and the treatments that follow are vital.

Geoff arrives after being struck down with an excruciating head pain that has left him semi-conscious. He can't open his eyes and something is clearly very wrong. Rushing him down for a scan, the programme follows the staff as they diagnose what's wrong and how to treat him. It's an emotional journey for his family and the medics that takes Geoff from A&E to the operating theatre, to a realisation that changes his life.

Time is critical too for Alan, who is rushed into A&E after collapsing in the street. Every second counts as the team carry out an urgent struggle to keep him alive and stabilise him.

Stephen is rushed to hospital having just suffered a potentially lethal stroke.  He cannot speak and seems to be paralysed down his right side. Within minutes, he is whisked to theatre to undergo a cutting-edge operation to have a blood clot removed to restore the supply to his brain. It's an operation fraught with risk. A wrong movement can cause a brain haemorrhage but getting it right could save his life.

Finally, Adam is flown in by air ambulance after being involved in a car crash that has left him with open chest and head wounds.

This engaging episode of Critical Condition delivers an intimate portrait of life-saving medicine through the eyes of those who live it – the staff and the patients.