Anchorage doctor: 'There is no rationing of care' - Must Read Alaska
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Saturday, October 16, 2021
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Anchorage doctor: ‘There is no rationing of care’

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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.”

Read: Medical theater as nurses show up in white lab coats at Anchorage Assembly to scare community

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.

The only hospital truly in crisis is Central Peninsula Hospital, the doctor said. That’s because about 30 nurses and staff have either tested positive for Covid-19 or were exposed to it and they are in quarantine for several days.

Providence has also 20 nurses and staff who are now off duty because of Covid-19 exposure or infection, and two patients in the hospital have been infected with Covid-19 while they were under Providence’s care; a memo was released this week that noted the patients had been in the hospital’s care for over two weeks, which is how the administration knows the Covid-19 was contracted while there. The infection among medical workers and patients is in Unit 5 North, and a robust testing schedule is now in place.

“We are a long way from having a degree of problem where we are rationing care,” he said. “This goes back to last year, when we stood up the field hospital in Alaska Airlines Center, but never used it, or the outdoor tent at Region for 20-30 patients who would be on ventilators — and they never used it. We have Plan A, B, C, and D, and we are on Plan A and a half.”

The doctor, who spoke on condition of anonymity, disputes the claims of those who said the emergency rooms are holding patients. “That is what they always do,” he said. In fact, the emergency room at Regional is slower than usual, he said.

“Once panic sets in, people stay home, because they are afraid of getting Covid at the hospital,” he said. “People are not getting care for legitimate illnesses.”

He also said there are plenty of ventilators in the state.

A Must Read Alaska reader corroborated the doctor’s story with a stroll through the emergency room welcome area of Providence hospital. The place was nearly empty, as shown in her video that she shared with Must Read Alaska:

The doctor said a number of Anchorage physicians are refusing to see patients who are not vaccinated for Covid-19, and that disturbs him.

“Most of the people who come into the hospital are there because of their decisions.” They eat too much, drink too much, smoke too much or drive too fast, he said. He encouraged doctors to think long and hard about going down the road of not treating patients who made the decisions they make, including to not get the Covid vaccine.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • We need to protect the protected from the unprotected by making the unprotected take the protection that didn’t protect the protected.

    • Walking down a hall way that is normally empty really proves nothing. Finding one doc to say anything is alot easier than living with the consequences of what you re all doing which is slowing down our all getting past this alive. In fact you are killing your neighbors.

      • So, I’m “killing my neighbors”? If you’re vaccinated, you may still contract and infect others and do so with a much higher viral load potential than we, the un-jabbed ever will. You people who did what the stranger on television told you to do are killing your immune system and by extension are causing mutations in this virus as it needs to, and will, overcome the vaccine obstacle. The rest of us? Our bodies adapt and overcome. Hence so many vaccinate people getting sick. If you want to throw hospitalization numbers out there, remember the CDC only counts people as “fully vaccinated” 14 days (two weeks!) post-final injection. So get the jobs, get sick, seek help and be counted as unvaccinated even though you are. Then re-read this article. Then hide under your bed while you read the latest research out of Israel. The most heavily vaccinated country in the world with Covid Infections off the charts. Virtue signal much?

      • No, you’re the superpreader typhoid Mary, aurora. YOU are the ignorant murderer.

        • Yep, you are killing people and are too moronic to understand science. You deserve what you get

          • Your hate makes me happy. 😁

        • Typhoid Mary is an excellent example, like you she did not want to submit to science and in so doing killed others

    • QE: Ha! Brilliant. The current covid “crisis” in a nutshell.

  • In other words, the Marxists on the Anchorage Assembly are liars. Do not listen to them. You don’t have to obey their mandates and their dictates because they don’t have the authority to make those choices for you. We are not under martial law or any other state of emergency, so just ignore them.

    • Walking down a hall way that is normally empty really proves nothing. Finding one doc to say anything is alot easier than living with the consequences of what you re all doing which is slowing down our all getting past this alive. In fact you are killing your neighbors.

      • If your neighbors are vaccinated and the vaccine reduces the severity of the illness should they become sick, and they are following all the in place protocols, how are my actions killing them? Killing me, maybe, but most certainly not them. Fear mongering is the label I would assign your post.

        • It is not fear mongering when you can literally watch it occuring around you

      • Saying things twice won’t make them true child. But if you’re so sure a crime is being commited then you should call the police. I’m sure they’d love to hear about all the neighbor killings that are occuring. 🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • Glad someone is going to the hospitals and doing an actual investigation for others to see! Thank you to the doctor that came forward with TRUTH and not fear mongering! It’s just sickening the hospital staff that are pushing that narrative… It’s doing more harm than good!

  • Somebody is lying to us. I suspect the people who put out the “we’re doomed and full” letter.

    The left is so desperate to get us to comply they will lie about and politicize anything.

    A society where the truth is fungible will fall.

    Get the hell out of Anchorage while you can.

  • Or, gosh, could staff shortages be because so many of us are being terminated for refusing the jab? This is my last week. And point of irony, discussion this morning centered around monitoring vaxxed staff because they often shed so much virus without symptoms, endangering patients and staff, vaxxed or not,.

    • Please contribute an Op-Ed to ADN – if they’d publish it! This is an important issue. I’m very sorry you’re in this situation after sacrificing and serving your community unvaxxed for a year and a half!

    • I’m so sorry to hear this. I know several people in the same boat as you and it’s a travesty.

  • Here lies the problem that has plagued this entire pandemic episode. Instead of information being reported as is, we are subjected to a daily diet of half-truths, slants or omission, along with the much abused “misinformation” label. When it becomes obvious that accurate data is not to be had, responding to this disease is no longer unified or effective. If there is no reliable source and the so called “experts” have proven to be beholden or have an agenda of their own, this shrill fever pitch is what you get.

  • My father was an ER doctor for many years back in the 80s and 90s and he told me that it is standard practice for ICUs to be 80-90% full. There are a lot of fixed costs involved in operating an ICU and without 80-90% utilization the hospital simply can’t make money.

    • Medicine is very different today than it was then. Also, most of the money made comes from elective surgeries.

  • Refusing to see patients because of lifestyle choices likely goes against the standards and ethics of all of our hospitals. Not to mention the hypocritical oath, if that is even still applicable today. Medical staff are being fired for refusing a shot, but yet others are allowed to pick and choose whom they treat just because they disapprove of them. Twilight zone.

    • I don’t think that Hippocratic oath has been in play since the beginning of this thing. Either they never meant it in the first place or the money that comes in with each “covid” patient speaks a great deal louder than words .

  • Great article and thank you to that brave doctor who still knows what it is to be an American.

  • Let me guess: this doctor’s testimony will just be dismissed as “misinformation” by the radical extremist authoritarians of the pro-corporate-media COVID death cult.

  • Thank you, Suzanne.

  • I take issue with the ADN articles that have been spreading this nonsense. I also have a personal contact who works at Regional and has been telling me exactly what this doctor says in your article. We need to start waking people up to the propaganda being peddled in the MSM

    From the ADN today:

    The state’s largest hospital, Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, announced last week it was shifting to crisis standards of care and rationing treatment due to a combination of staffing shortages and COVID-19 cases that accounted for about a third of the hospital’s patients.

    It’s likely the hospital will remain in crisis mode for at least another two weeks “while we wait for this current surge to flatten and then dip back down,” chief of staff Dr. Kristen Solena Walkinshaw said in a media briefing Monday.

    Providence decided to enact crisis standards on Sept. 11 as the hospital ran short on ventilation equipment — mostly used by COVID-19 patients — as well as staff and machines needed for dialysis, according to Solena Walkinshaw.

    A triage team using a specific formula to prioritize patients most likely to recover has been asked to help with several patient care decisions since then. Being vaccinated against COVID-19 is not part of the formula.

    One person died who was unable to get the continuous renal replacement therapy they needed, she said. Four patients needed the therapy and only two could get it. The patient who survived without dialysis remains hospitalized in a palliative care setting.

    Another decision involved deciding which patient got intubated because there weren’t enough beds in the ICU, where seriously ill COVID-19 patients often end up.

    • My question is, what does dialysis have to do with ventilators? Each bed is assigned a certain amount of staff and, as far as I know, those 2 are staged completely different because they require different training and staffing. ADN is a pile of crap.

  • The truth shall set you free.

  • Obviously the COVID “hair on fire, mass panic” stories inundating the local news and assembly meetings lately, are/ were just a coordinated effort by Ms. Meg and her other assembly minions to build-up a narrative supporting their (what was) soon to rolled out mandatory masking ordinance. Anyone who believes this narrative is being DUPED. I personally know of two individuals who very recently had non-emergency, elective surgeries… in spite of “rationed care???”. The other point to ponder on is, if masks are so effective, why do we have cases of COVID spreading through hospitals where masking and other protocols are strictly observed and adhered to… begs the question, “Are masks really effective or just a virtue signaling ruse?”.

    • I know of an individual who is also having an elective non-urgent procedure at Regional. The Lie-Stream media is shoveling it deep and thick.

      • Only if there was no risk she would need a bed idiot

        • Aurora, I can’t help but notice the consistent lack of tolerance and civility in your posts here. But sadly, that seems to almost always be the case with those who have a radically authoritarian political agenda based on mandates, conformity and coercion.
          .
          You might want to reflect on these facts.

          • Jeff,
            Good call, perhaps you would like to reflect on those same facts?

        • What are you talking about??

  • At least we have a Doctor that speaks the truth. This needs to go to the media. Thank you!! For your honesty

  • We ask Governor Dunleavy to issue an Executive Order imposing fines and license suspensions against: (a) medical providers refusing to see patients unvaccinated for Covid-19 and (b) pharmaceutical vendors who refuse to fill, or who obstruct the filling of, prescriptions for alternative Covid medications such as monoclonal antibody treatment or hydroxychloroquine.
    .
    We ask Governor Dunleavy for permanent repeal of Alaska’s certificate-of-need requirement for hospitals in order to relieve local governments from having to use the “overwhelmed medical facilites” excuse as justification for arbitrary, capricious mandates in the name of Covid prevention.
    .
    And, while we’re on a roll,
    .
    … may we ask Governor Dunleavy for an executive order: (a) prohibiting mask mandates and vaccination mandates ordered without factual, scientific justification, and (b) imposing fines against individuals, corporations, school districts, and governments who impose such mandates without such justification.
    .
    Thank you, Governor Dunleavy.

    • I completely agree, our Governor needs to stand firm against the hypocricy and madness.
      The mask mandates are just for show of power and control over we he people.
      Next week the ASSembly in anchorage intends to force masks, get on muni.org and sign up for your three minutes to speak against the illegal ordinance..
      I will not comply.

      As a state worker i urge the governor not to capitulate.
      Stand firm Governor Dunleavy, do not bend, do not break, do not break, you have our full support against these mandates.

      My body, my choice.

    • Now that’s a wish list I can get behind. Too bad Spineless won’t.

    • Where and did Gov. Dunleavy get his MD that he should decides on the appropriateness of a medical treatment, he on anyone who doesn’t list a School of Medicine on their resume?

  • It sounds like they’re pretty close to rationing care to me. Most hospitals running ICU beds at capacity, and another hospital’s doctors and nurses ill with covid. Wouldn’t take too much to push them over the edge it seems. 2 months ago when I said this all was coming to Alaska, I didn’t realize that the hospitals would be this over run. I thought people would get sick like they have and would hunker down and more people get the shots and mask up and get through it just like we did the first go around. But when people start playing politics with people’s lives, this is the result that you get. The good news is that hope is on the horizon. Hospital numbers and deaths are dropping down here some and it seems like we’re past the peak but more people have been vaccinated recently in that results in the lower numbers. Vaccinating 70% of Florida has helped acquire almost herd immunity here. Yes, there are things to learn from Florida.

    • “…Most hospitals running ICU beds at capacity…”
      How is this different than any other day? An ICU bed left empty is lost revenue. And revenue is required in order to keep the lights on and the staff paid.
      .
      “…hospital’s doctors and nurses ill with covid…” Actually, a lot of Drs. and nurses are sitting at home, perfectly healthy because they were ‘exposed’ to COVID and are doing 10 days in self isolation. (Even though they tested negative for the virus).
      .
      “…the hospitals would be this over run…” The hospitals are not overrun. Scarcity of care is the result of administrators taking steps to make care scarce. Things like firing the unvaccinated, putting COVID patients into single rooms instead of two, three or four COVID positive patients per room, and leaving resources in reserve because a “surge” might show up sometime.

    • That’s not the reports that are coming from media. According to a story from earlier this week, an “expose” said that children and vaccinated adults are dying in record numbers down there. So who’s right? Do you have sources that say different? If you do, why do you choose to believe that one instead of the other?

  • You mean they might be LYING! I’m shocked!

  • I thank the Doctor for this reassuring video what people like me I already know we being told lies, all part of a globalist agenda to take greater control over the whole world. I hope public noticed shared through people like Niles Sherman and this doctor increase courage in other people who can use their experiences and tell their story reassuring public members who see the truth reassured they aren’t rebellious and living in rebellion being disrespectful for going agianst our public authorities. Its actually the public authorities living in rebellion.

  • I was wondering why in all of the articles about Providence, there were no mentions of Alaska Regional. Alaska Regional’s website says current wait time in the ER was six minutes. No outside portapotties, no waiting in your car, etc. yet ADN nor KTUU mentioned anything about this hospital. Why are these docs lying and why don’t journalists do some digging?

    • Good observation Sammy. I picked up on that as well. Reading between the lines on such a big omission made me suspicious of what I was reading.

  • That’s weird.
    .
    If a Doctor or Nurse tests positive for COVID-19, but is asymptomatic, why not have them work the COVID patients? They are already segregated?
    .
    Yes, there is likely a lot of hoops to jump through to prevent further spread, but if the patients are already COVID positive, why send medical care professionals that are NOT COVID positive to provide care? Isn’t that just an invitation to spread the disease further?

  • Well. That’s a relief. Why would they go through so much time and trouble to frighten people like that? There ought to be a law about willfully misstating in such a disgraceful manner.

  • You won’t hear a thing about this on the local news, they have their marching orders and will stand by them, truth be damned.

  • Thank you so much for reporting on this! So good to hear someone with courage to put the truth out there for us. I hope this encourages more doctors and nurses to do the same and dispel all the fear.

  • MRAK denies that there is a problem because their website helped cause it. Feeling a little guilty?

    Fake news here!

    • Helped?

    • What problem?
      Please describe it.

  • Thank you Thank You Thank you. Maybe this will wake some people up. As yes there is a virus but politics is controlling the narrative.We must Scare people so we can CONTROL them. Disgusting.

  • So wait, the sky isn’t falling?

  • What a trash article. Are you kidding me? You have an anonymous, unnamed ‘source’ that we’re supposed to believe?

    The video you provide shows this woman walking through the main hospital waiting room, walk into the ER waiting room for about 1 second, then turns around without going around the corner… so we can see approximately 20% of the total waiting area. Also, lets not forget that Providence Hospital has been having patients wait in their cars instead of the waiting room in order to prevent spread of the disease.

    So, my question is: Is this intentionally lying, or just incompetent reporting?

    • Ok then. You first James E. Give us your fullname. Could you be a doctor? Don’t be afeared Jimmy. Tell us your full name.

      • You’re just a bully aren’t you. So sad. What did they do to you in school?

        • Such a tough guy.
          Especially considering your posting history.

    • Unlimited Kool-aid sounds delightful.

    • “…Providence Hospital has been having patients wait in their cars instead of the waiting room in order to prevent spread of the disease….”
      .
      Let’s not forget that the Assembly is using social distancing requirements as a justification for implementing a masking law. And, let me be absolutely clear here. If I had the opportunity to wait in my private car for emergency room care before this panicdemic hit, I would have gladly taken it in a second. In fact, I see that as an improvement, not an indicator of scarcity.

    • Thank you. I saw for myself when medevacing with my husband, from S.E., the emergency room at Providence was full, the main lobby was full of folks waiting to get to emergency. There was people waiting outside in their vehicles. I can not say, all were COVID cases, but it was crazy. My husband spent Sept.7 to Sept. 8th in ER, he was there for suspected heart issue, finally got a room, and released on Friday. The staff was excellent, tired, but kept going. I am not promoting, vaccines, I believe my choice was to be vaccinated, as your choice is to be or not. The staff have no reason to lie. Not a good article!

    • Do you think a doctor would ever be fired by a hospital for pleading to the public to wear masks even if they lie and say the hospital is overwhelmed when it is not in order pressure the public? The answer is, of course, no, especially when the hospital is also exaggerating the situation, and I’m sure that you believe that’s just fine because you believe people should wear masks and the ones that aren’t are causing people to get sick and perpetuating the pandemic and keeping us from getting to a point where we can have some freedoms back, etc etc. So that makes you and those docs far less credible in my eyes because you think lying is virtuous in this situation, as long as it makes people more afraid of covid and afraid to not wear a mask and be unvaccinated.

  • There are a lot of people trying to make what this unnamed doctor said fit their own narrative. This unnamed doctor did not say that there is nothing to be concerned about, what he said was “There is no rationing of care,” all of the ICU’s in Anchorage and Soldotna are full, in fact Soldotna has moved to overflow and old maternity wards. We don’t even know if this unnamed doctor is in fact a doctor, what his medical specialty is, or even if he is in fact a medical professional.
    .
    Alaska is now the number 1 state in the US for covid cases per capita, hospital statistics lag behind cases by a couple weeks…that means things are going to get worse before they get better. Pretending this isn’t happening doesn’t help anyone.

  • I drove a friend to Providence Emergency at around 6:30 pm Monday evening. I parked at the ER curb nearest the door and went inside. I was greeted by a security guard who asked why I was there. I told her I had a suspected Covid patient and needed help getting him out of the car into a wheelchair. A nurse immediately came to me with a wheelchair and helped me bring the man inside. I stopped at the entrance and they gave me a card to call in one hour to check his status. There were no other patients in the ER and none waiting outside. I called 75 minutes later and they confirmed he was going to be admitted with Covid. I told the nurse I was surprised because I had read the article in Sunday paper. She said the media story was greatly misleading. Believe it or not but someone is pushing their own agenda. I believe that the doctors and nurses and hospitals staff are working very hard but there are power plays and deceit going on in the assembly.

  • I took a friend to ANMC day surgery Monday and while there as an escort I took a stroll through, nothing looked chaotic, no staff running around with hair on fire, she even got seen early for her procedure. I even confirmed covid in-patient numbers are high but have been steadily dropping.

  • Follow the money. Hospitals make huge amounts of money on “cures” like vaccines and the machines which go “bing”…but they have to bill for them. They won’t tell you about simple home remedies for viruses like garlic, arsenic, and repeated oral doses of dihydrogen monoxide. Why? Because the drug pushers make no money! Put your faith in Jesus and know that if you are called to his side that it is his plan. When they try to take you to the hospital to treat you with their “medicines” or “vaccines” say NO! NOT TODAY SATAN!

  • Isn’t anyone a bit skeptical that Suzanne Downing actually “interviewed” a “doctor.” Or holds up a quick video taken as a brief snapshot in time as “proof.” How many times did she walk through until the waiting room looked good enough to post? It seems like real doctors who actually showed up and testified publicly should have a bit more credibility.

    • I actually was in the AK regional ER saturday with a relative and there was no one in waiting room and we got right in .. the parking lot was not even half full, which is unusual for the many times I have been here the last few years. Walking by the rooms in the ER not very many had patients in them. We got excellent care and it’s the quickest we have gotten through the ER in the last few years. The staff was professional and excellent.

    • B.S. those doctors’ jobs are not at stake when they show up and tell lies the assembly wants to hear. The anonymous doctor is protecting his job. I can also vouch that the hospital is not overwhelmed, but nobody listens, least of all the assembly. They get something in their mind and that is what they go with. Public testimony is something they have to get thru, they will pass what they want regardless of the testimony. Just like Pete Peterson said one time, “Sorry folks, we’re doing what we want.” End of story.

  • Well at 2:47 p.m. on Monday, 9/27/21, the current wait time at Alaska Regional ER is 11 minutes.

  • This is not correct. I am a medical provider who works at both prov and regional as well. There is certainly rationing of care. We often do not have enough CPAP/BIPAP machines, cardiac monitors, dialysis machines and other equipment. ICU level patients are being cared for on non-icu floors by non-icu nurses. Elective procedures requiring inpatient beds after surgery are being put off for months. These “elective” procedures includes heart valve surgery to treat severe heart failure symptoms like shortness of breath at rest and carotid artery surgery to prevent recurrent stroke. It will take us a year to dig out I estimate even if COVID 19 goes away tomorrow.

    For the record I am a totally anti-mandate guy – everybody should make their own choices on vaccines and masks (though I do recommend both unless you have a clear contraindication). I just wanted to take issue with the gist of this article.

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