Consultant: Susan M. Wolf, JD (University of Minnesota)
Even before 2020, older Americans made up the majority of ICU admissions and deaths. In 2020, as a pandemic infiltrates every corner of the globe, older adults are disproportionately impacted, facing greater morbidity and mortality from COVID-19 than any other segment of the population. As a society we are tackling unsettled questions about how best to deploy limited resources as we confront mass critical illness on a scale not seen for generations. These questions strike at the core of our ethos as a nation, challenging us to craft policies to sort through waves of patients, knowing that if crisis standards of care are enacted those policies will determine who is allocated intensive care resources – and who is not.