Four patients, two dialysis machines: Rationing medical care becomes a reality in hospitals overwhelmed with covid patients (Washington Post)

Washington Post: Four patients, two dialysis machines: Rationing medical care becomes a reality in hospitals overwhelmed with covid patients . “Rationing medical care, one of the most feared scenarios of the pandemic, is becoming a reality in a few parts of the United States as coronavirus infections remain at surge levels. On Thursday, Idaho officials announced the state was taking the extraordinary step of activating crisis standards of care statewide, giving hospitals the power to allocate — and potentially even deny — care based on the goal of who could benefit the most when faced with a shortage of resources such as ventilators, medications or staff. The decision will affect both covid and non-covid patients in a health-care system that is fraying.”

Idaho Capital Sun: Inside an Idaho hospital on Thursday, a ‘slower rolling’ mass casualty event

Idaho Capital Sun: Inside an Idaho hospital on Thursday, a ‘slower rolling’ mass casualty event. “It was quiet at 10 a.m. in the emergency department of the region’s only major trauma center. The ER had about 30 beds, with two in a hallway. Most of those beds were open and ready to take all comers. That changed quickly. There were 24 patients by 10:43 a.m. When the department’s chief physician checked the board two minutes later, there were 28.”

Newsweek: West Virginia Breaks Record for Daily COVID Cases Twice in One Week as Hospitals ‘Inundated’

Newsweek: West Virginia Breaks Record for Daily COVID Cases Twice in One Week as Hospitals ‘Inundated’. “On Saturday, West Virginia recorded 1,821 new coronavirus cases, reaching an all-time high for daily infections. That tally surpassed a record that was set just three days earlier, when the state recorded 1,738 new cases, the Associated Press reported. Prior to both days, the highest number of daily positive cases in West Virginia was just over 1,700 on December 31.”

ABC 4: St. George Regional Hospital turning down patient transfers due to capacity related to COVID-19

ABC 4: St. George Regional Hospital turning down patient transfers due to capacity related to COVID-19. “Intermountain Healthcare’s St. George Regional Hospital is at capacity and healthcare workers say most of their patients hospitalized or in the ICU are unvaccinated. With rising concerns that crisis care could come soon, doctors may have to pick and choose which patients get care. That hasn’t happened yet, hospital officials say.”

Vox: Americans are dying because no hospital will take them

Vox: Americans are dying because no hospital will take them. “During the current delta-driven Covid-19 wave, Americans are being transported hundreds of miles from their homes because no nearby hospital has room for them. Some of them have even died waiting for medical attention. In other words, US hospitals are being forced — in the middle of a public health emergency — to ration health care for their patients.”

Tennessean: East Tennessee hospitals warn frightening COVID spike is beginning to overload the system

Tennessean: East Tennessee hospitals warn frightening COVID spike is beginning to overload the system. “East Tennessee doctors delivered a clear message to the public today: If you get sick from COVID-19, your treatment could take longer and the best resources might not be immediately available to every patient. And if you rely on a rural hospital, things could be even worse.”

Anchorage Daily News: Amid COVID-19 overload, Alaska’s largest hospital is now prioritizing care under crisis standards

Anchorage Daily News: Amid COVID-19 overload, Alaska’s largest hospital is now prioritizing care under crisis standards. “Alaska’s largest hospital is now implementing crisis standards and rationing medical care amid a crush of COVID-19 patients and staff shortages that have forced providers to prioritize patients most likely to recover. Providence Alaska Medical Center’s chief of staff announced the decision in a two-page letter Tuesday that urges Alaskans to wear masks regardless of their vaccination status, get tested, get vaccinated if eligible and avoid potentially dangerous activities or situations that could result in hospitalization.”

ProPublica: A Boy Went to a COVID-Swamped ER. He Waited for Hours. Then His Appendix Burst.

ProPublica: A Boy Went to a COVID-Swamped ER. He Waited for Hours. Then His Appendix Burst.. “As the nation’s hospitals fill and emergency rooms overflow with critically ill COVID-19 patients, it is the non-COVID-19 patients, like Seth, who have become collateral damage. They, too, need emergency care, but the sheer number of COVID-19 cases is crowding them out. Treatment has often been delayed as ERs scramble to find a bed that may be hundreds of miles away.”

New York Times: Covid Hospitalizations Hit Crisis Levels in Southern I.C.U.s

New York Times: Covid Hospitalizations Hit Crisis Levels in Southern I.C.U.s. “Hospitals in the southern United States are running dangerously low on space in intensive care units, as the Delta variant has led to spikes in coronavirus cases not seen since last year’s deadly winter wave. One in four hospitals now reports more than 95 percent of I.C.U. beds occupied — up from one in five last month. Experts say it can become difficult to maintain standards of care for the sickest patients in hospitals where all or nearly all I.C.U. beds are occupied.”

Texas Embalmer Shares Nightmare COVID Experiences: ‘Unlike Anything I’ve Seen Before’ (HuffPost)

HuffPost: Texas Embalmer Shares Nightmare COVID Experiences: ‘Unlike Anything I’ve Seen Before’. “Patrick Huey contacted HuffPost after reading a story about a Florida-based ICU doctor who broke down on CNN while being interviewed about patients dying of COVID-19. The Texas-based funeral professional, who has worked as an embalmer for the past 30 years and won the South Central Texas Funeral Directors Association’s first-ever Embalmer of the Year award in 2019, offered to share his own harrowing COVID-related experiences, as well as the toll working in the funeral industry during the pandemic is taking on him and his colleagues.”

Columbus Dispatch: Rural Ohio hospitals say their ICUs are full as they struggle to keep up with COVID cases

Columbus Dispatch: Rural Ohio hospitals say their ICUs are full as they struggle to keep up with COVID cases. “A rising number of COVID-19 patients are squeezing rural Ohio hospitals and have already filled beds in an intensive care unit in Portsmouth. Portsmouth, about 80 miles south of Columbus, is a city of around 20,000 served by a 248-patient bed Southern Ohio Medical Center. With ICU beds full, the hospital may not have room to treat someone suffering from chest pains or a stroke or who was involved in a car accident, the medical center said in a statement posted to Facebook over the weekend.”

‘Their Crisis’ Is ‘Our Problem’: Washington Grapples With Idaho Covid Cases (Washington Post)

Washington Post: ‘Their Crisis’ Is ‘Our Problem’: Washington Grapples With Idaho Covid Cases. This is about the state of Washington, not DC. “Surgeries to remove brain tumors have been postponed. Patients are backed up in the emergency room. Nurses are working brutal shifts. But at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane, Wash., the calls keep coming: Can Idaho send another patient across the border? Washington State is reeling under its own surge of coronavirus cases. But in neighboring Idaho, 20 miles down Interstate 90 from Spokane, unchecked virus transmission has already pushed hospitals beyond their breaking point.”

Texas Tribune: At least 92 Texas hospitals were out of ICU beds last week, according to the latest federal data. Look up the ones near you.

Texas Tribune: At least 92 Texas hospitals were out of ICU beds last week, according to the latest federal data. Look up the ones near you.. “Hospital staff has never been in shorter supply, which deepens the strain on all departments, including emergency rooms, respiratory therapy and even labor and delivery. Without the capacity to take on new patients — and equally thin resources elsewhere to transfer them to — doctors fear they’ll have to start making heartbreaking decisions about care in order to save the most lives possible.”

WRAL: Hospitals across NC say staff, space maxed by latest COVID surge

WRAL: Hospitals across NC say staff, space maxed by latest COVID surge. “Over the past several weeks, the number of hospitalized COVID patients has surged across North Carolina to a near historic high of about 3,800. That’s a 10-fold increase in just two months. As of Wednesday, about 1 out of every 5 patients in North Carolina hospitals has the virus, data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shows.”