San Juan Regional Medical Center activates crisis standards of care

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FARMINGTON N.M. – Officials in the Four Corners are ringing alarm bells because of a dramatic spike in cases. San Juan Regional Medical Center is activating its crisis standards of care.

“Nonetheless, we find ourselves currently in a situation which extends beyond our ability to continue our routine operations and thus consistent with our state’s crisis standards of care, our organization has declared crisis standards of care for our hospital,” said Brad Greenberg, the emergency medical physician at San Juan Regional Medical Center.

Officials said as long they have space, they will provide service to whoever needs it.

By declaring crisis standards of care,the medical center will receive and distribute additional resources where they need it most. The hospital will receive over 70 caregivers through federal and state assistance. Some of the additional caregivers have already arrived.

“We will never accept crisis standards of care as the status quo," Dr. Greenberg said. "This is a recognition and we must as an organization and as individuals continue to adhere and accept ethical norms but we do have to accept that there are resource challenges. We’re going to get through this."

As of Wednesday morning, the hospital had 88 COVID-positive inpatients – more than half of all admitted patients. Health and government officials throughout the county got together Thursday, virtually, in hopes of spreading awareness.

“We’ve seen a reluctance in our own community of citizens to wear a mask in groups of people and so forth, which I’m sure has only added to the critical numbers that the hospital is seeing. It just makes it very difficult. I encourage the community to please wear your mask to protect yourself from one another,“ said Rosalyn Fry, Aztec mayor pro-tem.

“COVID is going to be with us for a while. How are we going to change the ways that we behave in order to make sure that those around us. Maybe we’re healthy people but I’ve seen healthy people get sick and be hospitalized, “Farmington Mayor Nate Duckett added.

Hospital officials are encouraging the public to continue to follow COVID safety protocols. They say they will continue to care for COVID and non-COVID patients as best they can.