02.03.2007 •

    The ethical dilemma of triage from disaster medicine and military aspects

    Triage may be necessary in a disaster and is usually required in a major disaster. Another requirement is that in category 4 the question of the chance of survival, which can usually fluctuate greatly for the injured and wounded in emergency medicine, must be reassessed regularly. According to the concurring statements of leading emergency physicians and doctors in war situations and major disasters, triage is one of the most emotionally stressful situations as it obliges the intuitive ethical approach to the patient to be surmounted directly. This ethical dilemma has the following features:
    - It is not possible to help all as they require as not enough treatment and transport means are available.
    - People can die under triage conditions who might otherwise be saved.
    - It is necessary to choose whom one will save and whom will not save or only save later.
    The fact that people cannot be cared for adequately and therefore die is a fundamental phenomenon in medicine, but the core problem of triage is therefore the fact that one chooses whom one saves.

    Datum: 02.03.2007


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