SAN DIEGO MAY RUN SHORT OF VENTILATORS IF PEOPLE DON’T STAY HOME

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By Miriam Raftery

March 22, 2020 (San Diego) – The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that hospitals countywide (not counting the military) have 826 respirators – and around 500 are now in use.  While some additional respirators may be available by tapping into our nation’s emergency strategic supplies, if the growth in severe COVID-19 cases continues to grow at the rate it has recently, supply could soon outstrip demand, meaning life-saving treatment would not be available to all who need it.

Fortunately, we may all be able to prevent that from happening. The UT reports, “Hospital impact models suggest that it’s quite possible to make it through the coming spread of disease across the region without outstripping ventilator and hospital bed capacity, but only if a significant percentage of the populace actually follows through with the social-distancing measures that have been ordered.”

Around 1% of COVID-19 patients need ventilators –but among those patients, severe respiratory symptoms tend to appear rapidly.  With immediate access to a ventilator, pressure can be applied to open up collapsed air sacs in the lungs before irreversible lung damage or death occurs. With this intervention, the patient can get enough oxygen for their own immune system to have time to kick in and start fighting off the virus.

Nationally, a shortage of ventilators has health professionals alarmed. The latest estimate from the American Hospital Association predicts that nearly a million people nationwide could need ventilators due to COVID-19, but the U.S. has only 12,700 stockpiled to supplement hospitals’ normal supply. Nearly a third of all Americans are expected to eventually contract COVID-19, which is why it’s important to stay home and spread out the time frame for exposure over a longer time period, so that hospitals won’t become overwhelmed with many critically ill patients all at  once.

In Italy, where exactly that occurred, doctors have been forced to triage patients, denying ventilators to those deemed least likely to survive.  

A modeling tool developed at the University of Pennsylvania indicates that in San Diego, decreasing social contacts by at least 45 percent will be needed to prevent the number of hospitalized patients from exceeding the number of hospital beds and ventilators available to treat all who need help to breathe.

Read the full Union-Tribune report: https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/health/story/2020-03-22/san-diego-hospitals-have-a-greater-than-average-ventilator-supply?fbclid=IwAR3PB71ZG22DH8uOFrcHXdk-0gG5gD1r-Z8ucoiODjlxmTZo_RTl9yhX26c



 

Comments

That's what I was hoping but

That's what I was hoping but I guess not. quite a few that stay here on a regular basis all have to still do the 28 day move out do to tenancy laws. I just find it really unnerving packing up everything going to another place unknowing the risks and then having to turn around and come back the next day. Thank you very much though for your help

What did the lungs say to the COVID-19 ??

. . . ‘You take my breath away" …’. . . COVID-19 causes a dangerous and potentially fatal condition known as acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Patients who are suffering from ARDS end up having damage to the walls of the air sacs in their lungs — the ones that help oxygen pass through into our red blood cells. . . .The coronavirus damages both the wall and lining cells of the alveolus as well as the capillaries. The debris that accumulates because of all of that damage lines the wall of the alveolus the same way paint would cover a wall. The damage to capillaries also causes them to leak plasma proteins that add to the wall’s thickness. . .ARDS is a serious disease that can be frightening for patients and families to endure. The outcomes tend to be better in younger patients, trauma patients and when ARDS is caused by blood transfusions. Most people will not die of the severely low oxygen levels in the blood associated with ARDS. However, the chance of dying increases dramatically if other organs begin to fail. This could include liver failure, kidney failure or severely decreased blood pressure. . .The Society of Critical Care Medicine has projected that 960,000 coronavirus patients in the U.S. may need to be put on ventilators at one point or another during the outbreak. But the nation has only about 200,000 of the machines, by the organization's estimate, and around half are older models that may not be ideal for the most critically ill patients. . . Also, many ventilators are already being used by other patients with severe, non-coronavirus ailments. The other problem is that there are only enough respiratory therapists, specialist nurses and doctors with the ideal type of critical care training in the U.S. for about 135,000 patients to be put on ventilators at any one time.

Hotels

Does anybody happen to know if a hotel can kick you out and require you to move after 28 days even during the stay home order? I live in a hotel that requires a 24-hour check out after the 28th day and although I can pay my rent they are still forcing me to move out for one day is there any laws regarding this?

Kathy, I don't know the laws on this but suggest you contact

your county supervisor and state senator or assemblymember to see if anything can be done, or the County Bar to see if there's a lawyer who might take this on pro bono.

I would have thought with all the tourists leaving town they would be glad to have anyone able to rent rooms. Maybe a waiver of some law is in order here.  Or might they let you just move from one room to another?