ICU 4 U Charity Cycle
We are a group of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) doctors, nurses and staff from all over Ireland that are taking part in a charity cycle to Dublin on September 3rd and 4th in aid of four charities supporting people specifically affected by the Covid-19 crisis.
The ICU 4 U Charity Cycle aims to raise at least €100,000 for older people (ALONE), cancer patients who are particularly vulnerable to the virus, have had their diagnosis delayed, and urgently need new treatments (Breakthrough Cancer Research), mental health (Aware) and ICU patient aftercare support (ICUsteps).
We have raised more than half of our €100k target thanks to incredible support from our corporate sponsors, including lead sponsor AerCap, gold sponsors Eli Lily and BNP Paribas, silver sponsors Pfizer and Gilead. We would also like to thank other event partners including Intersurgical, the Dalata Group, the Intensive Care Society of Ireland, the Irish Association of Critical Care Nurses, The Edge Sports, An Garda Síochána, Cycling Ireland, Irish Rail and Harris Group.
ICU 4 U Ambassador, Graham Norton, says, “The entire nation is grateful to these incredible doctors and their teams who have been working tirelessly in the ICU to keep our most vulnerable safe. But the modest bunch who have been putting their lives at risk throughout this pandemic say it’s just their job and I applaud them for leading the way in putting the public focus back on supporting charities who badly need funding.”
The event takes place as follows:
Date: 3rd & 4th of September
The 2-day ICU 4 U Cycle, cognisant of any restrictions that will be in place in any county due to Covid-19, will start on September 3rd from five locations in Ireland – Belfast, Galway, Limerick, Cork and Waterford – and will end on September 4th in the Phoenix Park, Dublin, where the teams of 15 cyclists will meet and cycle together towards Aras an Uachtarain. A smaller group will then cycle on through central Dublin to the College of Anaesthesiology of Ireland in Merrion Square (the home of both the Intensive Care Society of Ireland and the Joint Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine of Ireland) and another small group will cycle on to the Mater Hospital, where the most severely ill ICU patients are sometimes sent for ECMO treatment (Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation). This is also the hospital that managed a significant number of Covid-19 patients.
Thank You to Our Sponsors
ALONE, a national organisation that supports and empowers older people to age happily and securely at home, saw a 39% surge in calls to their helpline since the start of the Covid-19 crisis, with a rise in reports of elder abuse, loss of independence, and fears about reintegrating back into society. Their new Health and Wellbeing Plan addresses key issues that continue to affect older people in the later current Covid-19 Roadmap, including social interaction, activities, fitness, and physical and mental wellbeing. The charity works with all older people, including those who are lonely, isolated, homeless, living in poverty, or are experiencing other difficulties, supporting them through these challenges to help find long term solutions.
Aware, the leading mental health organisation providing support, education and information services for those impacted by depression, bipolar disorder and other mood related conditions, has recorded a 68% rise in calls since the emergence of Covid-19, with significant peaks in April, May and July of over 80%, highlighting the impact of the pandemic on public wellbeing. Since the start of the crisis, Aware has modified the way the organisation delivers its services to address logistical challenges and meet the increase in demand for services. The introduction of an app allows volunteers to take calls at home ensuring continuity of the Support Line service, Aware’s Support and Self Care Groups have been replaced with Zoom and conference call meetings, and they significantly increased delivery of their online positive mental health programmes, along with moving a number of group programme to the virtual classroom.
Breakthrough Cancer Research (Breakthrough) is an Irish medical research charity focused on disrupting cancer’s future and saving lives, one research breakthrough at a time. The charity had to put some of its research and even clinical trials on hold over the past few months because of temporary restrictions to university laboratories and hospitals, as well as the widespread cancelation of fundraising events. Many people also avoided investigating new symptoms and health complaints during the lockdown which will most likely lead to a delay in cancer diagnoses. When every second counts, new and better treatments have never mattered more.
ICUsteps Dublin, a national voluntary support group that helps those recovering from critical illness with long-term physical and psychological consequences, has been working with many Covid-19 ICU patients throughout the country. COVID adds to the distress of ICU patients, including increased delirium, disorientation and difficulty communicating with staff wearing PPE, as well as being separated from family. They advocate for the provision of aftercare in the shape of a formalised follow up after ICU discharge to the ward and a follow-up clinic. These measures may reduce some of the long-term problems and improve quality of life.