'Running out of hallways': Report reveals a nightmare scenario at a Montana hospital

'Running out of hallways': Report reveals a nightmare scenario at a Montana hospital
U.S Army critical care nurses 1st Lt. Charles Gilcrist and 1st Lt. Lauryn Hudgins from Urban Augmentation Medical Task Force - 627 work to provide medical care to a COVID-19 patient alongside Baptist Hospital medical staff, in San Antonio, Texas, July 10, 2020. The UAMTF is comprised of Soldiers with various medical specialties from the 627th Hospital Center, Fort Carson, Colo., and deployed to support San Antonio hospitals during the COVID-19 response. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to states in need. (U.S. Army photo by Luis A. Deya)

One hospital in Billings, Mont., is facing a nightmare scenario as its frontline workers desperately try to treat the influx of unvaccinated patients battling severe cases of COVID. According to Kaiser Health News, the Billings Clinic intensive care unit is so inundated with COVID patients they are "running out of hallways."

Multiple doctors at the medical facility have spoken out to share details about the scenario they are faced with at work. Dr. Nathan Allen, the medical ethicist for Billings Clinic, revealed the facility is at a point where they may not be able to "meet all patients' medical needs." He added: "And that's heartbreaking."

"Nobody wants to be in a position where we may have to ration health care and potentially remove a ventilator from one patient who would likely die and give it to another," said Dr. Scott Ellner, the hospital's CEO. "Are we there? I would say we are very close."

Christy Baxter, director of critical care at Billings Clinic, also weighed in on the difficult decisions they face when it comes to caring for patients.

"Do you give that optimal care to one patient or do you give great care to five?" Baxter said.

Baxter went on to share details about one nurse's decision to quit after constantly having to lie to patients about their prognosis when he was aware that they would likely succumb to the complications of the virus.

"The patients look at you with that fear in their eyes and say, 'Am I going to make it?'" Baxter said. "You want to encourage them to not give up hope, but you also know the chances of survival are going to be slim."

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