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In its latest guidelines, the Union Health Ministry has said that people who have very mild symptoms of coronavirus or are pre-symptomatic can opt for home isolation, provided they have the requisite self-isolation facility at their residence.
Currently, all those who test positive for the novel virus are immediately isolated and admitted in hospitals, makeshift hospitals or wards dedicated to coronavirus patients to contain the outbreak.
"As per existing guidelines, during the containment phase, the patients should be clinically assigned as very mild/mild, moderate or severe and accordingly admitted to COVID Care Centre, Dedicated COVID Health Centre or Dedicated COVID Hospital, respectively. However, very mild/pre-symptomatic patients having the requisite facility at his/her residence for self-isolation will have the option for home isolation," the ministry stated.
The patients can discontinue home isolation if symptoms are clinically resolved and the surveillance medical officer certifies them to be free of infection after lab tests are done.
Who Is Eligible For Home Home Isolation?
*A person can be under home isolation only if they are clinically assigned as a "very mild case/ pre-symptomatic" case by the treating medical officer.
*They should have the requisite facility for self-isolation at home and also for quarantining the family contacts.
*A caregiver should be available on a 24x7 basis to care for the patient. A communication link between the caregiver and hospital is a pre-requisite for the entire duration of home isolation.
*It is required for the caregiver and all close contacts of such cases to take Hydroxychloroquine prophylaxis as per protocol and as prescribed by the treating medical officer.
*The patient should download Arogya Setu App on mobile and it should remain active at all times through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
*The patient should agree to monitor their health and regularly update their health status to the District Surveillance Officer for further follow up by the surveillance teams.
*The patient has to fill in an undertaking on self-isolation and should follow home quarantine guidelines.
When Should Patient Seek Medical Attention?
It is mandatory for the patient or the caregiver to keep monitoring their health. If serious signs or symptoms develop, immediate medical attention must be sought. These could include:
*Difficulty in breathing
*Persistent pain/pressure in the chest
*Mental confusion or inability to arouse
*Developing bluish discolourations of lips/face
As of Tuesday, April 28, India has reported 29,663 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Of this, 7,176 people have recovered and 940 have died.
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