Ensuring Triage Fairness in the Next Pandemic

COVID Triage
March 14, 2024

Susan M. Wolf, JD, Chair of the Consortium on Law and Values, co-authored a recent article appearing in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society critiquing state approaches to triage in the COVID-19 pandemic. The article on “COVID‐19 Triage Schemes to Face the Next Public Health Emergency” calls for improvements in triage to prepare for the next pandemic. The authors argue that the reluctance in the COVID pandemic to formally trigger triage despite crisis conditions and the emergence of state triage schemes disadvantaging vulnerable populations pose a significant problem that needs to be solved before the next public health emergency requiring triage of scarce health care resources. The article’s lead author was Erin S. DeMartino, MD (Mayo Clinic), who is Principal Investigator on an NIH grant examining “Heterogeneity in U.S. Pandemic Allocation Policies.” Additional coauthors on the new article are Jackson S. Ennis, BA (Mayo Clinic), and Daniel P. Sulmasy, MD, PhD (Georgetown University).