“Distribution decisions will be to decide which patients receive which resource and in some circumstances may involve decisions to take scarce resources from one patient and give them to another who is more likely to benefit from them.”
The unusual move comes as hospitals in Los Angeles County treat more than 8,000 patients with Covid-19, a growing number showing no signs of slowing as the region continues to report thousands of new cases each day.
There is likely to be a shortage of staff, the guidelines said. If there is a shortage of respiratory therapists, for example, the employee will decide whether the patient’s ventilator will be operated by a therapist or a doctor.
The guidelines emphasize fairness and fairness, but keep in mind that first-line healthcare professionals will receive some preferences.
Triad officers are part of the county’s growth plan and must be identified when the hospital enters a “crisis care mode.”
Although no hospital in Los Angeles County is in that situation today, four have notified the state that they are “approaching or entering crisis care at some point in time.”
The California Department of Public Health declined to name specific hospitals for fear it would discourage future critical notifications.
When a hospital notifies the state that it has entered crisis care, regional and state resources are immediately mobilized to return the hospital to conventional or emergency care as soon as possible, according to the state health department.
Currently, no county in California provides standards for rescue care or supplies, the department said.
CNN’s Teresa Waldrop contributed to this report.