The New York Times
quoted McGuireWoods partner
Amber Walsh, former chair of the firm's Healthcare Department, in a
Sept. 22, 2021, story on the postponement of medical treatments and surgeries for non-COVID
patients in areas with a surge of COVID hospitalizations.
The article reported that many U.S. hospitals have been hit hard over the
past two months by the Delta variant of the coronavirus, with
intensive-care units overflowing and non-COVID patients forced to await
medical treatment. In this environment, hospital administrators and doctors
are making difficult decisions about which patients can undergo surgeries
and other procedures that are not emergencies.
Unlike in the early months of the pandemic, Walsh remarked, state, local
and federal agencies do not have the appetite this time to prohibit
elective surgeries. Instead, they are much more likely to work with public
health officials and their competitors to better manage the higher demands
“You do see a lot of local hospital associations coming together, making
their own rules of the road,” she said.