Suffering from the epidemic, Colorado hospital leaders and frontline providers have responded to what they describe as an unusual level of collaboration and innovation. The Colorado Hospital Association recently stated this and the state’s hospitals and health system created the Joint Hospital Transfer Center, a system for transferring patients between hospitals.
If there is a need to move patients in excess of the capacity of the hospitals, the center will be activated. The CHA stated that transfers would be determined by the data so that patients needed care without overloading a particular hospital. The plan is that if a hospital reaches capacity or cannot provide the required level of care to a patient, they will contact the center. The center will decide which hospital in the region or state can provide that care and has capacity, while also considering the proximity and priority of the patient.
CHA Vice President of Clinical Affairs Drs. Darlene Tad-y said, “We have learned from other states that have already responded to significant outbreaks.” This will allow us to react to capacity issues faster than a city in Colorado or Can withstand the field. “
By the end of December, models suggest ICU beds may hit capacity
The desire not to overload the health system guides many public health decisions. As of November 4, 10 percent of hospitals projected a staff shortage in the following week and 4 percent projected a shortage of personal protective gear, with the same percent saying they anticipated a shortage of ICU beds.
If COVID-19 cases escalate too quickly, every part of the system is strained to supply personal protective equipment from nurses and doctors to scheduled surgery.
According to state disease modeling, by the end of December, the ICU bed, which hosts the sickest patients, can kill with its potential.
France said, “It is the week around Thanksgiving and beyond where we are beginning to be concerned that COVID cases and our traditional hospitals may be overshadowed by our staff and our beds.”
In the worst case, the hospital will activate what is called “crisis standards of care”, a decision-making process to determine who cares first, the number of patients the ability to care for them Should be out of. In late October hospitals in Utah said that the number of people hospitalized was so high that they were considering a move to that posture.
“This is a constant concern,” Dr. Said Anuj Mehta, a pulmonologist at National Jewish Health, who also works in Denver Health’s ICU. Mehta helped develop Colorado’s guidelines. “Obviously the anxiety subsided over the summer … and now, rightly, the anxiety happens every single day.”
Mehta said that hospitals and other health care providers bought more ventilators and made advances in deciding on patients to use them.