It’s ‘World War III,’ says L.A. County doctor beset by intensely sick COVID-19 patients

Local news

Many Californians spent New Year’s Eve in a safe place with immediate family. Dr. Nick Kwan, the assistant medical director of emergency services at Alhambra Hospital in Los Angeles County, spent it with a COVID-19 patient who went into code blue — cardiac or respiratory arrest — five separate times.

Code blue requires the medical staff to summon a quick and intense response to resuscitate the patient.

“It’s mentally, physically and emotionally draining,” said Kwan, who struggled to articulate the toll that a monthlong surge of COVID-19 patients is placing on his and other hospitals across Los Angeles County.

“This is a full-on Category 10. … It’s literally World War III,” he said.

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