- Union Health Ministry has issued fresh guidelines on home isolation
- The patients must also download government's Arogya Setu app
- A caregiver should be available 24x7 to care for the patient
The Union Health Ministry has issued fresh guidelines on home isolation for coronavirus patients who have only either very mild symptoms of the infection or are "pre-symptomatic". At present, all those who test positive for COVID-19 are immediately isolated and admitted in hospitals, makeshift hospitals or wards dedicated to coronavirus patients to break the chain of transmission of the highly contagious virus. The government said "very mild/pre-symptomatic patients" who have the facilities to keep themselves isolated in their homes, can do so. Those under home isolation must be stay in touch with the government surveillance officer and a hospital, as well as sign an undertaking. The patients must also download government's Arogya Setu app and keep it active at all times, the Health Ministry said.
Who Is Eligible For Home Home Isolation?
- The patient can be under home isolation only he or she is clinically assigned as a "very mild case/ pre-symptomatic" case by a doctor.
- Patients with "very mild" symptoms "pre-symptomatic" cases who have the facilities in their homes for self-isolation and also for quarantining their family members.
- A caregiver should be available 24x7 to care for the patient. A communication link between the caregiver and hospital is a pre-requisite for the entire duration of home isolation.
- The caregiver and all close contacts of such cases should take hydroxychloroquine prophylaxis as per protocol and as prescribed by the treating medical officer.
- Download government's Arogya Setu app on mobile phones. The app should stay active at all times through bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
- The patient should agree to monitor his or her health and regularly give an update on 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 must follow home quarantine guidelines.
When Should Patient Seek Medical Attention?
The patient or the caregiver should keep monitoring their health. Immediate medical attention must be sought if serious signs or symptoms develop. These could include:
- Difficulty in breathing
- Persistent pain/pressure in the chest
- Mental confusion or inability to arouse
- Developing bluish discolorations of lips/face
- As advised by treating medical officer
When To Discontinue Home Isolation?
Patients under home isolation can end home isolation if their symptoms are clinically resolved and the surveillance medical officer certifies him or her to be free of infection after lab test are done.