January 13, 2021 / Modified jan 13, 2021 6:38 p.m.

Possibility of COVID-19 triage care looms over Arizona hospitals

Physicians believe at least 1 in 10 people in Arizona is infected with the virus

360 banner covid A handout image from Banner Health shows a health care worker in one of the hospital's COVID-19 units.
Banner Health

Currently facing the worst COVID-19 infection rate in the country, leaders of Arizona's major hospitals say the state faces the possibility of having to ration life-saving care.

The chief clinical officers of Arizona’s five biggest hospital systems spoke Wednesday at a joint news conference to implore the public and the state to do more.

Under a triage plan, “triage officers” at each hospital would decide which patients receive treatment if there are shortages in staffing, beds or ventilators.

The physicians believe at least 1 in 10 people in Arizona is infected with the virus. The state Wednesday reported over 5,600 additional COVID-19 cases and nearly 200 more deaths.

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