Challenges and Decisions in the Face of Coronavirus Pandemic
By Xesús Manuel Suárez García, General Secretary of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance
“My father was to be admitted to the ICU today. But he’s not going to be treated in it.”
A woman explains that her father, affected by the coronavirus and with serious respiratory problems, was scheduled to enter the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) that day for treating his condition. That same morning, a 44 years old seriously affected man came to hospital and the doctors decided that the bed in the ICU should be occupied by that person and her father would have to wait. The doctors were applying a decision scheme like the White scale, which defines reasonable criteria for situations like this, but it is difficult to assume for someone who must remain outside the ICU.
Xesús Manuel Suárez García raises “Ethical Dilemmas at Stake”, looks at the question of “Security and Freedom”, “The Responsibility of the Government” and thinks through ways “How to get ahead of the Curve” as well as considering “Other Lessons Learned from the Pandemic”.
A balanced analysis and some good conclusions which already start the debate of evaluation and making sure we do not inherit new standards as negative outcomes. Six pages worthwhile to read. Download here
 WHITE DB, KATZ MH, LUCE JM and BERNARD L. Who should receive life support during a Public Health Emergency? Using Ethical principles to improve allocation decisions. Ann Intern Med. 2009; 150 (2): 132-8. This scale, useful for deciding who to admit to the ICU in public health emergencies, weighs the severity of the process and its chances of recovery, the patient’s pre-admission life expectancy, etc. It also proposes involving the general population in the definition of ethical decision criteria related to this.