COVID-19 breaking news: Two NSW regions heading into lockdown; NSW records 1284 cases, 12 deaths; Home quarantine trial for NSW

COVID-19 breaking news: Two NSW regions heading into lockdown; NSW records 1284 cases, 12 deaths; Home quarantine trial for NSW

By Associated Press17 Sep 2021 06:57

In another ominous sign about the spread of the delta variant, Idaho public health leaders on Thursday expanded health care rationing statewide and individual hospital systems in Alaska and Montana have enacted similar crisis standards amid a spike in the number of unvaccinated COVID-19 patients requiring hospitalisation.

The decisions marked an escalation of the pandemic in several Western states struggling to convince sceptical people to get vaccinated.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare made the announcement after St Luke’s Health System, Idaho’s largest hospital network, asked state health leaders to allow “crisis standards of care” because the increase in COVID-19 patients has exhausted the state’s medical resources.

Idaho is one of the least vaccinated U. states, with only about 40 per cent of its residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Crisis care standards mean that scarce resources such as ICU beds will be allotted to the patients most likely to survive.

Other patients will be treated with less effective methods or, in dire cases, given pain relief and other palliative care.

A hospital in Helena, Montana, was also forced to implement crisis standards of care amid a surge in COVID-19 patients.

And earlier this week Providence Alaska Medical Center, Alaska’s largest hospital, also started prioritising resources.

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