Opting life-saving measures to younger or the elder in the critical care centre amid covid pandemic crisis: the ethical and legal dilemma

AUTHOR(s) : Mahanta Putul
DOI No. : 10.31741/ijhrmlp.v7.i1.2021.1


The dreadful pandemic of Covid-19 has wrecked the worldwide population. Furthermore, the pandemic has initiated an unprecedented admission of ailing cases in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) or Critical Care Centre (CCC), raising various ethical conflicts relating to the Triage, removing life-saving supports and providing end-of-life care. Besides, the moral and ethical quandary has also increased manifold while communicating with patients and family members, including informed consent and informed refusal to the suggested treatment procedures. The acknowledgement of massive acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) cases in serious form surprisingly surpassing the bed availability at the CCC in most parts of several countries. Due to this fact, four novel choices never used before were well-thought-out with the primary objective in reduction of fatality of the cases as much as possible, viz., (i) to line up the maximum number of beds at CCC for cases with the excellent outcome; (ii) to raise the number of economic bed at CCC; (iii) to arrange to shift to distant centres with more beds availability and (iv) reduction of ICU stay and the removal of life-saving measures. The hospital visit by the family members was also banned to save them from the infection. Thus, India has taken unprecedented and stern preventive measures against Covid-19 to control its spread to protect its citizens. However, as a prime component of the healthcare system, the treating physicians face a substantial legal and ethical dilemma while dealing with many patient’s influxes at the CCC worldwide.

Cite this editorial as: Mahanta Putul. Opting life-saving measures to younger or the elder in the critical care centre amid covid pandemic crisis: the ethical and legal dilemma. Int J Health Res Medico Leg Prae 2021 Jan-Jun;7(1):7-11. Doi: 10.31741/ijhrmlp.v7.i1.2021.1.

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