One of the scariest epidemics in our lifetime has just taken a turn for the worst. Now, it is even more frightening as some may face sure death if they cannot personally beat the coronavirus if they contract it.
Inside the medical field, hospitals are now debating privately on if they should continue their obligations to “save at all costs.” This means if a person is dying from the coronavirus, should they resuscitate them?
Some doctors and nurses have fallen victim to catching the highly contagious illness. Some of these caregivers have even died. Fear has spread even to those who save lives, and now they are weighing their options if they should try to save a person’s life if they are at the end of their life.
Caregivers are saying the exposure is increasing and wondering if they should put themselves in harm’s way to save one life versus many others. Folks, never in our lives could we imagine how far this has come to where this is even an issue.
So what is the problem? The value of every life is sacred. The staff is overworked and falling to the virus. There will be a mass shortage of caregivers to victims if this continues. There is also still a shortage of PPE, which leaves the medical staff exposed.
The argument continues when a patient “codes” which means breathing stops and their heart stops, the medical staff who goes in to revive the patients are in extreme danger of catching the virus and passing it on to other staff members. This leaves everyone with the toughest decision known to mankind.
This could also play a mental effect on caregivers, volunteers, and the medical staff who have the dreaded decision to let a person die.
The Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago is the first hospital to come up with this debate, and more are following in their footsteps. This totally goes against the wishes of the patient and the family members who will be left behind.
Richard Wunderink, one of Northwestern’s intensive-care medical directors, asked the governor of Illinois JB Pritzker to clarify the state law if they have the power to change the policy.
Wunderink stated, “It’s a major concern for everyone. This is something about which we have had lots of communication with families, and I think they are very aware of the grave circumstances.”
To even think of such a thing is horrific. The fact that Chicago’s medical facility dared questioned the governor is an eye-opener to how bad this has gotten. They only spoke amongst themselves and did not speak to anyone else on ways to cope with this issue.
There are officials at George Washington University Hospital which is also in the same district say they have already discussed the potential hazards and face the same scenario. They discussed their options as well if they should let the patient die to save others and or the hospital staff.
For now, they decided to continue doing what they are doing for every patient, and when one “codes,” they take extra precautions. They are using a plastic sheet to place over the patient while they work to revive them.
In Seattle, Washington, the University of Washington Medical Center was on the top of the list of hotspots where they are also facing the same issue. In Washington, the situation is worse because there is more medical staff that succumb to the virus while trying to revive the patients. Now they are facing a shortage of help so desperately needed.
Larger hospitals like Atrium Health in the Carolinas, Regional Kaiser Permanente Networks, and Geisinger in Pennsylvania have already begun looking for ways to override the family and the patients’ choice to live.
They are doing this because the fear is so horrible. Everyone ran short of PPE. All of these companies are declining to give any statements to their decisions.
Lewis Kaplan, president of the Society of Critical Care Medicine and a University of Pennsylvania surgeon, explained the situations medical centers are facing.
He said, “We are now on crisis footing. What you take as first-come, first-served, no-holds-barred, everything-that-is-available-should-be-applied medicine is not where we are. We are now facing some difficult choices in how we apply medical resources, including staff.”
Apparently, we have reached a time where people are starting to get afraid to catch COVID-19. Now the fear grows if they are going in for a sure death