Idaho ration health care statewide as COVID outbreak continues

BOISE, Idaho (AP) – Public health officials in Idaho on Thursday expanded statewide healthcare rationing amid a massive increase in the number of coronavirus patients requiring treatment. hospitalization.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare made the announcement after the St. Luke Health System, Idaho’s largest hospital system, asked health officials in the Idaho on Wednesday. State to authorize “crisis care standards” because the increase in the number of COVID-19 patients has drained the state’s medical resources.

Crisis care standards mean scarce resources like intensive care beds will be allocated to patients most likely to survive. Other patients will be treated with less effective methods or, in extreme cases, will benefit from pain relief and other palliative care.

Thursday’s decision came a week after officials in Idaho began allowing health care rationing at hospitals upstate.

“The situation is dire – we do not have enough resources to adequately treat patients in our hospitals, whether you are there for COVID-19 or a heart attack or because of a car accident,” said Dave Jeppesen , director of the Idaho Department of Social Affairs. in the statement.

He urged people to get vaccinated and wear masks indoors and in crowded outdoor places.

“Our hospitals and health systems need our help. The best way to end the standards of crisis care is to get more people immunized. This greatly reduces your chances of having to go to the hospital if you get sick with COVID-19, ”Jeppesen said.

One in 201 Idaho residents tested positive for COVID-19 in the past week, according to a count from Johns Hopkins University. The predominantly rural state ranks 12th in the United States for new cases per capita and is among the least vaccinated states in the country.

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