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Crisis Standards of Care activated in north Idaho hospitals

BOISE, Idaho (KIFI) - The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare has activated Crisis of Standards of Care in hospitals located in north Idaho Tuesday morning.

Kootenai Health in Coeur d'Alene requested the activation after a surge in COVID-19 cases is filling hospital beds and not enough medical staff to care for patients.

The health department said the CSC Activation Advisory Committee met virtually on Monday and recommended that crisis of standard care be activated in the Panhandle and North Central Health Districts.

The facilities include:

  • Panhandle (PHD1)
    • Benewah Community Hospital
    • Bonner General Hospital
    • Boundary Community Hospital
    • Kootenai Health
    • Shoshone Medical Center
  • North Central (PHD2)
    • Clearwater Valley Hospital and Clinics
    • Gritman Medical Center
    • St. Joseph Regional Medical Center
    • St. Mary’s Hospitals & Clinics
    • Syringa Hospital & Clinics

IDHW officials say crisis standards of care are guidelines that help healthcare providers and systems decide how to deliver the best care possible under the extraordinary circumstances of an overwhelming disaster or public health emergency. The guidelines may be used when there are not enough healthcare resources to provide the usual standard of care to people who need it. The goal of crisis standards of care is to extend care to as many patients as possible and save as many lives as possible.

“We have reached an unprecedented and unwanted point in the history of our state. We have taken so many steps to avoid getting here, but yet again we need to ask more Idahoans to choose to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. More Idahoans need to choose to receive the vaccine so we can minimize the spread of the disease and reduce the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations, many of which involve younger Idahoans and are preventable with safe and effective vaccines,” Governor Brad Little said.

“Crisis standards of care is a last resort. It means we have exhausted our resources to the point that our healthcare systems are unable to provide the treatment and care we expect,” said DHW Director Dave Jeppesen. “This is a decision I was fervently hoping to avoid. The best tools we have to turn this around is for more people to get vaccinated and to wear masks indoors and in outdoor crowded public places. Please choose to get vaccinated as soon as possible – it is your very best protection against being hospitalized from COVID-19.”

IDHW officials said the crisis standards of care will remain in effect until there are sufficient resources to provide the usual standard of care to all patients.

Article Topic Follows: Coronavirus Coverage

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