The 31-year-old GB international limped off during the recent 4-2 home win over Belfast Giants with what was later diagnosed as a broken wrist.
Head coach Barrasso said he expected Philips to be out for at least eight weeks, prompting the need for the Steelers to scour the market for a replacement.
Phillips’s absence has left the Steelers operating with just five defencemen, a situation Barrasso insisted could not be expected to continue for the duration of Phillips’s absence.
“It’s not possible to play five defencemen for two months in this league,” Barrasso told BBC Sheffield.
“It is just too physical, you’ll wear your defencemen down and then they are going to get hurt and you could find yourselves down to four. So we need to find somebody. We’ve been working on that a little bit, but that is a pressing matter for us now I think and within the next five to seven days we’ll hopefully have something resolved.”
Steelers face just the one game this weekend, hosting Coventry Blaze tomorrow ahead of the return leg of their Challenge Cup quarter-final against Guildford Flames, with whom they drew 4-4 in the first leg on Wednesday.