The rural and the urban population below the poverty line cannot deal with coronavirus at the household level due to the lack of awareness about the infection, essential medical equipment to check health parameters, a survey has found.
The survey was conducted between June 30 - July 11 across ten states, including Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Maharashtra, news agency ANI reported.
Nearly 7,116 households were surveyed by Sambodhi Panels. Around 20 percent had thermometers, and 50 percent had drugs available to treat mild symptoms. Only 9 percent had oximeters, and 3 per cent had access to oxygen cylinders.
Only 40 percent of the respondents are aware of the virus symptoms and their gravity. They are aware of the medications required to treat mild symptoms.
Unaware Of New Variants
The households in these 10 states were not aware of the newer variants of the virus and the symptoms associated with it. Many did not have the understanding of when an individual needs hospitalisation.
According to the report, about 35 per cent of the people said that patients should be hospitalised after they show the first symptom, while 18 per cent said that the patient must be hospitalised right after they test positive.
"It seems that there is a need to increase information dissemination among vulnerable sections of society on newer Covid variants, associated symptoms, and recommended treatment protocols so that people take appropriate measures," the media quoted Swapnil Shekhar, co-founder of Sambodhi, reported ANI.
Around 95 per cent were able to recognise at least one of the early symptoms of COVID-19 like fever, difficulty in breathing, headaches, and cough.
Nearly 18 per cent termed diarrhoea as a symptom, while the rest mentioned conjunctivitis and skin rashes as two of the symptoms.
This comes at a time when experts have warned about the potential third wave of COVID-19. In a recent poll by Reuters, the experts had forecast that the dreaded third wave could hit India by October. However, vaccination could help curb the potential outbreak, many had opined.