A medical doctor who works at both Regional and Providence hospitals says that while hospitals in Alaska are indisputably under pressure, they are not in crisis and the public should not panic.
“There is no rationing of care,” the doctor said. He took issue with the Providence medical professionals who showed up a the Anchorage Assembly meeting on Sept. 14 to tell the Assembly that the hospital is now under a crisis standard of care protocol and that mask mandates are certainly in order.
There is no crisis standard of care, he said: “That is not a term of art.”
If they were, Providence would have requested more ventilators, and the hospital has not done so. If the hospital was in crisis mode, then surgeons would not be performing elective surgeries, but they still are, he said.
It is true that ICU beds are full at Providence, Alaska Native Medical Center, Alaska Regional Hospital, and Central Peninsula Hospital. But that is a normal condition, according to this doctor. Hospitals typically only have enough ICU beds for the expected load of patients.