Covid-19 patients under home isolation must wear 3-layer medical mask: Centre

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The Union health ministry has issued a revised guideline for Covid-19 patients under home isolation detailing what diet and medicines they should follow and what they should do to not spread the infection among other family members.

The room where a Covid-infected person will be isolated must be well-ventilated and all windows should be kept open. The patients should use triple-layer medical mask at all times, the guideline said. “Discard mask after 8 hours of use or earlier if they become wet or visibly soiled. In the event of caregiver entering the room, both caregiver and patient may consider using N 95 mask,” it said adding that masks should be discarded only after disinfecting it with 1% Sodium Hypochlorite.

While such patients have to track their temperature, heart rate, oxygen, breathing difficulties if any and overall wellbeing, they should also drink a lot of fluids.

“Elderly patients aged more than 60 years and those with co-morbid conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, chronic lung/liver/ kidney disease, cerebro-vascular disease etc shall only be allowed home isolation after proper evaluation by the treating medical officer,” the guideline said.

List of medicines to take, home remedies to follow

With the number of Covid-19 cases shooting sharply in the country, the healthcare system has come under immense stress with states reeling under oxygen shortage. At this time, the Centre is reiterating that the maximum number of people will recover at home, without needing Remdesivir or oxygen.

Here are what Covid patients should do at home

> Patients may perform warm water gargles or take steam inhalation twice a day.

> If fever is not controlled with a maximum dose of Tab. Paracetamol 650mg four times a day, consult the treating doctor who may consider advising other drugs like a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) (ex: Tab. Naproxen 250 mg twice a day).

> Consider Tab Ivermectin (200 mcg/kg once a day, to be taken empty stomach) for 3 to 5 days.

> Inhalational Budesonide (given via inhalers with spacer at a dose of 800 mcg twice daily for 5 to 7 days) to be given if symptoms (fever and/or cough) are persistent beyond 5 days of disease onset.

> Oral steroids, Remdesivir are not for home administration.

After at least 10 days of isolation, a patient can discontinue it when there is no fever for three days. There is no need for testing after the home isolation period is over, the guideline says.

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