Health workers facing grim life-and-death decisions

A cancer survivor said an oncologist told her that in the event of a surge, she should try to avoid the ER for her own safety.
3:07 | 04/02/20

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Transcript for Health workers facing grim life-and-death decisions
We stay on the need for ventilators tonight. Doctors fearing they need to make choices. Americans with pre-existing conditions, they have concerns. What one cancer patient told us she was told. Here's Matt Gutman from California. Reporter: Tonight, with fatalities spiking over 25% in just one day nationwide, health workers on the front lines making grim life and death decisions. We're using medications more and more often. Reporter: It's the basic tools of the trade of medicine? Yeah. Reporter: Akshay ganju is an E.R. Doctor in westchester. I'm nervous about one day needing to look a daughter in the eye and tell her that I don't have a ventilator for her Reporter: Valarie Roberts from Sacramento is a grandmother and cancer survivor. Nobody, nobody's allowed in my house. Reporter: Health care providers are warning people like her to stay out of hospitals unless they're very, very sick. She says her oncologist called her to say in the event of a surge. I wouldn't be probably a candidate for a ventilator if it was between me and a healthy person, no. The conversation was tough. If you get this virus and get complications with it, we need to discuss comfort care for you. Comfort care as in morphine? Yes. Reporter: Her hospital released a statement about the conversation, saying we will do everything we can to fulfill these before a hospital surge occurs. Did he tell you that he understood that once he was intubated, he might not come out of it? Yes. Excruciaing moments. Matt, L.A. County have announced an unusually high percentage of those hospitalized today have no underlying conditions? Reporter: Yes, 76% of those hospitalized in L.A. County are otherwise healthy. Statewide, the number of icu cases have quadrupled statewide. But 34,000 retired or people out of the health care have decided

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