Covid-19 pandemic

Don't self-medicate or rush for chest X-rays, scans: Govt advisory on home isolated

In the wake of massive hoarding of drugs, including steroids at the height of the second wave, the new advisory has warned mild patients against the use of steroids

Don't self-medicate or rush for chest X-rays, scans: Govt advisory on home isolated

Photo for representation.

Aditi Tandon

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 5

Do not rush for self-medication, blood investigations or chest X ray or chest CT scan without consultation of the treating medical officer, said the government in the new advisory for mild and asymptomatic patients of Covid 19 as daily cases crossed 58,000 on Wednesday and active infections passed the two lakh mark in signs of growing caseload and a third wave.

In the wake of massive hoarding of drugs, including steroids at the height of the second wave, the new advisory has warned mild patients against the use of steroids.

“Steroids are not indicated in mild disease and shall not be self-administered. Overuse and inappropriate use of steroids may lead to additional complications,” says the new guidance by the health ministry.

The ministry said the asymptomatic cases were laboratory confirmed cases, who are not experiencing any symptoms and have oxygen saturation at room air of more than 93 pc.

“Clinically assigned mild cases are patients with upper respiratory tract symptoms with or without fever, without shortness of breath and having oxygen saturation at room air of more than 93,” says the advisory.

Among those eligible for home isolation are patients clinically assigned as mild and asymptomatic by a treating doctor, patients who have the requisite facility at their residence for self-isolation and for quarantining family contacts.

“A caregiver (someone who has completed his Covid-19 vaccination schedule) should be available to provide care on a 24 x7 basis. A communication link between the caregiver and a medical officer is a prerequisite for the entire duration of home isolation. Elderly patients aged more than 60 years and those with co-morbid conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, chronic lung/liver/ kidney disease and Cerebrovascular disease shall only be allowed home isolation after proper evaluation by the treating medical officer. Patients suffering from immunocompromised status (HIV, transplant recipients, cancer therapy) are not advised home isolation and shall only be allowed home stay after evaluation by the treating Medical Officer,” the ministry said.

Home isolated patients should seek medical attention is the following symptoms develop -- Unresolved High-grade fever (more than 100° F for more than 3 days, which remains unresolved with a maximum dose of paracetamol 650 mg four times a day); difficulty in breathing, dip in oxygen saturation below 93 pc on room air at least three readings within one hour ) or respiratory rate more than 24 per minute, persistent pain and pressure in the chest, mental confusion or inability to arouse, severe fatigue and myalgia.

The patients under home isolation will stand discharged and end isolation after at least seven days have passed from testing positive and no fever for three successive days and they shall continue wearing masks. There is no need for retesting after the home isolation period is over, says the advisory.

Asymptomatic contacts of infected individuals need not undergo Covid test and can monitor health in home quarantine.

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