A leaked presentation reveals the document US hospitals are using to prepare for a major coronavirus outbreak. It estimates 96 million US coronavirus cases and 480,000 deaths.

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A leaked presentation reveals the document US hospitals are using to prepare for a major coronavirus outbreak. It estimates 96 million US coronavirus cases and 480,000 deaths.

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  • Hospitals are confronting the rising threat of the novel coronavirus in the US.
  • In a February webinar presentation hosted by the American Hospital Association, national healthcare experts from organizations across the US laid out what hospitals need to know as they face the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • Here's a look at the presentation, which includes estimated projections that there could be as many as 96 million cases in the US, 4.8 million hospitalizations, and 480,000 deaths associated with the novel coronavirus
  • It also includes proper ways to identify potential coronavirus patients, isolate them, and keep caregivers at the hospitals informed.
  • Click here for more BI Prime stories.

The spread of the coronavirus outbreak in the US could push the healthcare system to its limits.

Hospitals are bracing for what could be millions of admissions nationwide as the virus spreads.

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The American Hospital Association, which represents thousands of hospitals and health systems, hosted a webinar in February with its member hospitals and health systems. Business Insider obtained a copy of the slides presented.

The presentation, titled "What healthcare leaders need to know: Preparing for the COVID-19" happened February 26, with representatives from the National Ebola Training and Education Center.

The presentation contained an overview of the virus, projections and estimates of how much the virus might spread in the US, and proper ways to identify potential coronavirus patients, isolate them, and keep caregivers at the hospitals informed.

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In particular, one slide presented by an expert included "best guess" estimates that there could be as many as:

  • 4.8 million hospitalizations associated with the novel coronavirus
  • 96 million cases overall in the US
  • 480,000 deaths
  • Overall, the slide points out that hospitals should prepare for an impact to the system that's 10 times a severe flu season.

Those estimates come from Dr. James Lawler, a professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. They "represent his interpretation of the data available. It's possible that forecast will change as more information becomes available," a spokesman for Nebraska Medicine told Business Insider in an email.

The American Hospital Association said the webinar reflects the views of the experts who spoke on it, not its own.

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"The AHA regularly hosts webinars and conference calls that include a variety of voices and opinions that seek to provide relevant information to professionals at hospitals and health systems that are on the front lines of preparing for and protecting their patients and communities," a spokeswoman for the AHA told Business Insider in an emailed statement. "The slides you shared reflect the various perspectives of field experts and should not be attributed to the AHA."

Here's a look at slides presented in the webinar.

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