Virtual Learning Hour Special Series: COVID-19 and Crisis Standards of Care

April 17, 2020


  • Donald M. Berwick, MD, MPP, FRCP, President Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)
  • Derek Feeley, President and CEO, IHI
  • Dan Hanfling, MD, Vice President, In-Q-Tel and a co-convener of the CSC working group under the auspices of the National Academies’ Standing Committee on Emerging Infectious Diseases
  • Christine K. Cassel, MD, Professor of Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine, and Senior Advisor for Strategy and Policy (focused on biomedical ethics and the role of technology in health care)
  • Moderated by: Madge Kaplan, Director of Communications, IHI

​​Crisis standards of care (CSC), as defined by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), are a substantial change in usual health care operations and the level of care it is possible to deliver, which is made necessary by a pervasive (e.g., pandemic influenza) or catastrophic (e.g., earthquake, hurricane) disaster.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, a committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) developed guidelines to help health care leaders and policymakers better understand the legal, transparent, ethical, and evidence-based principles that must inform any changes to how health care systems operate.​

This Virtual Learning Hour discusses crisis standards of care, the circumstances under which they might be implemented, and considerations such as:

  • What role the public should play in developing guidelines
  • The loosening of the usual evidence base before using certain treatments
  • Whether more clinicians could benefit from training in bioethics
  • How to factor in existing health inequities

Listeners also have the opportunity to share their questions, struggles, and bright spots they are seeing in this unprecedented time.

Average Content Rating
(1 user)
Please login to rate or comment on this content.
User Comments