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‘The situation is dire:’ Idaho activates crisis standards statewide over COVID-19


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BOISE (Idaho Statesman) — The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare announced Thursday that it has activated crisis standards of care for the entire state, the latest development in Idaho’s worsening battle with COVID-19.

Crisis standards of care, were created in June 2020 as a plan to strategically ration health care if hospitals become overwhelmed with the demands in front of them.

Crisis standards mean hospitals must prioritize patients differently. Typically, a hospital prioritizes those who needs medical attention most and treats them first. When crisis standards are activated, health care is given to patients who are most likely to survive.

“The situation is dire – we don’t have enough resources to adequately treat the patients in our hospitals, whether you are there for COVID-19 or a heart attack or because of a car accident,” IDHW Director Dave Jeppesen said in a news release Thursday.

‘On the brink’ of crisis standards of care. Here’s what we know about Idaho hospitals

In previous weeks, crisis standards were activated in the Panhandle Health District and the Idaho North Central District.

Health officials have warned of the activation of crisis standards for weeks.