March 24, 2020 / BY SOPHIE LEWIS
Health officials in New York are experimenting with the possibility of having two patients share one ventilator as the coronavirus pandemic has caused widespread shortages of the machine, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced in a press briefing Tuesday morning.
Cuomo emphasized the severity of the shortage of hospital equipment, including beds, ventilators and personal protective equipment. He said ventilators are difficult to produce and extremely expensive.
“This is a critical and desperate need for ventilators. We are going so far as to try an experimental procedure where we spit the ventilator,” Cuomo said. “We use one ventilator for two patients. It’s difficult to perform, it’s experimental, but at this point, we have no alternatives.”