As the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic evolves, questions regarding the fair allocation of scarce medical resources, such as ventilators, antiviral drugs, and vaccines, abound. Piscitello et al1 provide a valuable summary of US state ventilator allocation guidelines during public health emergencies. Even if guidelines for ventilators have not been widely implemented during the current pandemic, the principles they articulate are an important statement of social values. The variation among guidelines that Piscitello et al1 uncovered suggests that there is no consensus on the adequate balance between different ethical considerations.
Pathak PA, Sönmez T, Ünver MU. Improving Ventilator Rationing Through Collaboration With Experts on Resource Allocation. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(6):e2012838. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.12838