I am asking this question on behalf of my wife, who works in respiratory care, in a hospital. Her position involves direct patient care.
Due to recent spikes in the more contagious delta strain of the Covid 19 virus, the resources, such as ventilators, at the hospital in which she works is becoming more strained. Unfortunately, we live in a state in which spread is high,and vaccination rates below average.
She recently said that if the current spike gets worse, ventilators and other patient care resources may need to be tightened to include sharing such as co-ventililation. However, she has discussed with me how she has serious concerns of such practices being unsafe. Back in March of last year, a joint statement was made by organizations representing physicians in anesthesia and respiratory care professionals, strongly advising against sharing, as sharing of equipment may endanger patients due to differing needs of the individual patient.
If I were in her shoes, I understand the need to be resourceful with equipment use in a public health crisis, but would be similarly uncomfortable due to endangering patients wellbeing, and my state license.
@Ertai, yes she is basing her reluctance on medical best practices and expert knowledge. The cited article is an example and the professional organization representing her profession for which she belongs is another example. Respiratory therapists are considered experts in ventilator management and can intervene for patients in respiratory distress. From our conversation, her primary concern is that sharing of ventilators ignores unique needs of an individual patient , worsening their care, possibly with serious injury or, God forbid, death as result.
Update The situation has worsened and triage started. There is probably need to resort to coventilation. My wife along with her other colleagues in critical care will meet with hospital administration later next week. As unsafe as this may be, Hilmar probably gave the best answer
How does one communicate reluctance to engage in an potentially unsafe practice when quitting is not feasible due to other peoples health being on the line?
How can my wife communicate her concerns while protecting her job?