National Geographic 7/24/20
A French military surgeon, Dominique Jean Larrey, came up with the idea of sorting casualties for care based on the severity of the soldiers’ wounds, regardless of their rank. (Larrey even treated enemy soldiers—earning him a reputation that spurred the Prussian calvary to save his life when he was captured.)
Two centuries later, the goal of triage in emergency medicine remains the same: to provide the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of individuals. But as large parts of the United States face soaring numbers of coronavirus cases, medical staff are grappling with how to stay true to this principle.
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