Paediatric Critical Care Society Trainee’s Audit & Research Network

PICSTAR is the trainee-led collaborative network for Paediatric Critical Care Society (PCCS). It is for PICM Grid trainees and allied health professional trainees (eg. Paediatric critical care nursing trainees and clinical fellows). PICSTAR was founded by two PICM grid trainees in 2019 to enable trainees to become involved in multi-centre, national audit and research projects. In March 2022 a new committee was appointed


How does it work?


PICSTAR works closely with PCCS-SG and is the trainee-led arm of the science and education group. PCCS-SG provides mentorship, support and advice to PICSTAR in the development of new projects within audit, service evaluation, surveys and research. PICSTAR is also supported by PCCS and RCPCH PICM ISAC

PICSTAR has a secure database of its members and representatives from Paediatric Intensive Care Units (PICU) and Paediatric Intensive Care Transport Services across the UK. We are developing a regional network with the UK split into five regions. Each regional lead raises awareness of ongoing projects, aids data collection and co-ordination of projects regionally.

PICSTAR projects are advertised via the regional network, on social media and via PCCS-SG to individual PCCU units as required.

Results will be published nationally bearing the PICSTAR name and with all contributors being individually named. All material proposed for publication resulting from collaborative network efforts is reviewed prior to publication to assure quality.


How do I get involved?


If you would like to join PICSTAR please email 

Suggestion for a PICSTAR project?


We welcome suggestions for national PICSTAR projects. If you have ideas and would like to discuss them further, please contact us at or contact any of the team directly.



PICSTAR Committee:


Dr Sofia Cuevas-Asturias
Year 2 National Grid Trainee in PICM
ST6 Paediatrics
Bristol Children’s Hospital


Hannah Mitchell
Paediatric Academic Clinical Fellow ST4

Data and Web leads

James Diviney
Year 2 National Grid Trainee in PICM
ST7 Paediatrics
Great Ormond Street Hospital

Alex Dewar ST8
Year 2 National Grid Trainee in PICM
ST8 Paediatrics
Nottingham Children’s Hospital

Social lead 

Alexandra Perkins ST6
Starting PICM Grid training in September 2022
Paediatrics ST
Evelina hospital

Current Projects:


The use of peripheral vasoactive drug infusions in paediatric critical care patients

Lead: James Diviney

Mentor: Lyvonne Tulme

This is a national service evaluation survey to look at the use of peripheral vasoactive drug infusions in paediatric critical care patients. The main objectives are to:

  1. Review current practice across the UK around the use of peripheral noradrenaline infusions for paediatric critical care patients
  2. To gain an understanding of clinician perception of the risks and benefits of peripheral noradrenaline use

It will also highlight differences in the concentration and infusion rates used. If use is already widespread then this will help inform future research examining whether this has impacted on the morbidity related to central access insertion or on the rate of extravasation injuries


PICSTAR Airway Group

Leads: Gokul Ramanathan, Sofia Cuevas-Asturias, Ged Manning, Fouad Marzouk

Mentor: Padmanabham Ramnarayan & Anna Barrow

Two projects:

  1. National point prevalence study of airway management complications. The aim is to capture a dataset for each child (0-16) who is intubated as an emergency and admitted to a UK PICU within a specified timeframe. This research plans to capture data that NAP4 (NAP4: Major Complications of Airway Management in the United Kingdom) did not.
  2. National service evaluation survey is planned to look at the national provision for airway support in paediatric intensive care units and to understand how this compares to advanced airway support provision in adult intensive care units.


Other initiatives:


Developing the Paediatric Critical Care section of the DFTB website – (Home – Don’t Forget the Bubbles).

Lead: Josh Hodgson – HOME – Don’t Forget The Bubbles (DFTB) is website dedicated to making us all better at caring for the child in front of us.


What’s the evidence for…?

A quarterly online session to look at the latest evidence base medicine for PICM trainees and allied health professionals. Each session will be led by trainees and co-hosted by a senior consultant within PICM.