Pandemic Response: Strategies for Increasing Critical Care Capacity


Mahshid Abir, Senior Physician Policy Researcher

Based on my work as a frontline emergency physician over a decade now, I knew that critical care at baseline was a resource that was scarce across the United States and that in the setting of the pandemic that that scarcity could impact outcomes for patients and whether they survive or not.

The project identifies the evidence base for strategies to increase critical care capacity in hospitals across the U.S. in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and developing a tool to allow hospitals to predict their bottlenecks in surge in response to critical care needs. Unfortunately, this tool and report not only was relevant when it was released back a few months into the pandemic, but it became relevant time and time again over the past year and a half, as many different epicenters evolved across the United States as the pandemic progressed.