NHM Assam Issues Guidelines for Home Isolation of COVID-19 Patients
National Health Mission (NHM), Assam, tasked with combating the COVID-19 disease, has released a set of guidelines for patients under home isolation.
Issuing a warning to the public at large, NHM notified that home isolation is actually meant for asymptomatic COVID-19 patients or for people with mild symptoms.
“You should opt for home isolation only after proper medical advice. While in home isolation, please strictly monitor your body temperature and oxygen saturation level frequently,” NHM Assam added.
The NHM has directed patients to immediately report their situation if his/her oxygen saturation level falls below 95% or if the patient develops one or more of the following symptoms: Dry cough and fever, Diarrhoea, Loss of speech and movement, Lips or face turning blue, Trouble breathing/ shortness of breathing, Persistent pain or pressure in the chest, Mental confusion and inability to awake from sleep.
“Remember, late reporting of alarming symptoms by home isolation patients might lead to serious complications and may cause death,” NHM Assam further added.
The National Health Mission, Assam has also released a set of dos and don'ts to be followed by the patients as well as care-givers.
The patients should:
* Use triple layer mask all the time
* Stay in a completely separate well-ventilated room
* Stay away from other people especially elderly and people with co-morbidities.
* Strictly follow physician’s instructions and medication advice
* Self-monitor his/her health, if any symptom develops, report immediately
* Wear a triple layer mask when in the same room with the patient
* Provide food to the patient in their room
* Wash hands properly with soap and water after handling the patient
* Avoid direct contact with body fluids of the patient
* Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily
* Make sure that the patient follows the prescribed treatment
It should be mentioned that the number of COVID-19 cases in Assam has been constantly rising leading to a dearth of hospital beds. However, officials in the health department opine that home isolation is leading to increase in COVID-19 death rate in the state.
Citing the reason for the prevailing critical situation amongst positive patients, health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said, "People are adamant on staying at home upon testing COVID-19 positive. However, they do not follow the required norms or even bother to check the necessary vitals. When they finally come to the hospital for treatment, it's often too late. Thus they succumb to the disease within two to three hours."
Sarma added that the situation in Assam is worrisome as the number of patients admitted in the ICU of GMCH is comparatively higher than the general wards.
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