Kootenai Health announced it is transitioning to crisis standards of care with a record number of patients hospitalized for COVID-19.
The hospital converted a classroom into a patient care unit to accommodate additional patients. The space, which can accommodate up to 22 patients, will be used to care for low-acutiy COVID-19 patients, according to the hospital. The use of the space for patients means the hospital is transitioning to crisis standards of care.
"Crisis standards of care are guidelines that help health care providers decide how to deliver the best care possible under extraordinary circumstances," the hospital announced in a statement. "These can include disasters or public health emergencies when health care systems are so overwhelmed by patients, or resources are so scarce, it is no longer possible to provide all patients the level of care they would receive under normal circumstances. The goal of crisis standards of care is to extend care to as many patients as possible and save as many lives as possible."
Kootenai Health set a new high of COVID-19 patients at 96, the previous high was 91 on Dec. 23, 2020. The hospital installed a higher-capacity oxygen tank "because the hospitalized COVID-19 patients they are seeing now have a much greater need for oxygen."
"Based on predictive models and the rapid spread of the COVID-19 delta variant in our community, the hospital expects the surge to continue to escalate," the hospital said in a statement.