Since the beginning of COVID, there has been devastating story, day after day, week after week, with only a relief of the depressing news for a couple of months. We are now over 650,000 deaths due to COVID in America, and the number shows no sign of slowing down. The vaccine was a major relief, and is what allowed us to begin to open fully back up again. That’s when the Delta variant came about and took America and many other countries by storm and became the dominant variant in most countries in the world. Hospitals early on became extensively overwhelmed and understaffed. Unfortunately, we are seeing very similar things in hospitals in some states across the United States.
States like Alaska and Idaho have imposed a crisis standard of care to help alleviate some of the stress that has been ensued on healthcare workers. Crisis of care looks different from state to state. Medical News Today describes Idaho’s version, “crisis care standards may mean that patients end up treated in hallways or tents. Elective and urgent surgeries have been delayed at one hospital. There may be fewer nurses and doctors caring for more people. Patients may wait hours to get what they need to have to transfer to another hospital far away – though health leaders caution that neighboring states are struggling with an influx of coronavirus cases, too.” Hospitals have simply become far too overwhelmed and have started to have to make some tough decisions on patients. This is much like the ventilator situation in the early stages of COVID. Nurses and doctors are being put in a difficult decision to determine who needs what and who can have what.
Patients can’t be prioritized as normal because of the extreme overflow of patients in their building. Normally, it would be easier to assess who is in trauma states and need attention now, but there are so many severe cases that these decisions are nearly impossible to be made and therefore are putting healthcare workers in a conundrum.
We can all do our parts to help our hero’s in the healthcare industry. They are putting their lives and families lives on the line each and everyday at work. Do your part and get vaccinated and where your mask as instructed to help prevent the spread of the virus.