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Table 3 Ranking of prioritization strategies for ethical decision-making

From: Protecting providers and patients: results of an Internet survey of health care workers’ risk perceptions and ethical concerns during the COVID-19 pandemic

Prioritization strategy
Ranking Survivala Youthb HCWsc Sickestd First Ine Lotteryf VIPg Otherh
1 46.3% 10.3% 22.6% 11.1% 4.0% 2.4% 0.5% 2.9%
2 25.4% 31.2% 16.1% 14.0% 7.6% 3.2% 1.3% 1.3%
3 13.8% 26.7% 27.3% 14.1% 8.1% 7.2% 1.7% 1.0%
4 5.9% 14.6% 15.1% 23.2% 18.3% 15.1% 7.0% 0.8%
5 4.9% 8.6% 8.1% 18.4% 27.8% 22.3% 8.7% 1.1%
6 1.7% 6.2% 7.6% 11.3% 24.2% 30.0% 17.2% 1.7%
7 1.6% 2.4% 2.9% 6.7% 9.2% 17.5% 51.0% 8.7%
8 0.3% 0.0% 0.3% 1.1% 0.8% 2.4% 12.6% 82.5%
Average Ranking 2.1 3.1 3.1 3.9 4.7 5.2 6.4 7.5
  1. Survey question: “Imagine you were required to make your institution’s policy on how to ration scarce life-saving resources to patients. Of the following SEVEN approaches, please rank in order how you might prioritize patients. Please mark 1 for your first choice, 2 for your second choice, 3 for your third choice, etc.”
  2. aPrioritize people who are most likely to survive based on clinical picture regardless of other factors
  3. bPrioritize young people who have greater potential to live a longer life
  4. cPrioritize health care workers
  5. dPrioritize the sickest people regardless of other factors
  6. eUse a “First Come, First Served” approach until equipment runs out
  7. fUse a lottery system to give everyone a fair shot
  8. gPrioritize people who are important political, business, or cultural figures
  9. hAnother prioritization approach