Flu Nightmare: In Severe Pandemic, Officials Ponder Disconnecting Ventilators From Some Patients

September 23, 2009 – Sheri Fink – ProPublica – With scant public input, state and federal officials are pushing ahead with plans that – during a severe flu outbreak – would deny use of scarce ventilators by some patients to assure they would be available for patients judged to benefit the most from them.

The plans have been drawn up to give doctors specific guidelines for extreme circumstances and they include procedures under which patients who weren’t improving would be removed from life support with or without permission of their families.

The plans are designed to go into effect if the U.S. were struck by a severe flu pandemic, comparable to the 1918 outbreak that killed an estimated 50 million people worldwide. State and federal health officials have concluded that such a pandemic would stricken far more people needing ventilators than could be treated by the available supplies.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: