The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) on Monday issued a statement saying that persons with mild or presymptomatic Covid-19 will be allowed to opt for home isolation, provided the individual’s residence has the facility to do so.
According to the present guidelines in place during the containment phase, the patient should be classified as very mild, mild, moderate or severe and suitably admitted to a Covid Care Centre or dedicated hospital.
“However, very mild/ presymptomatic patients having the requisite facility at his/her residence for self-isolation will have the option for home isolation,” the ministry’s statement said.
Who can opt for home isolation?
Individuals who have clinically been identified as a very mild or pre-symptomatic case by the treating medical officer would be allowed to do so. But prior to that, they would be required to fill an undertaking on isolation agreement.
• They should have the required amenities for self-isolation at home and also for quarantining the family contacts
• A caregiver should be designated on 24 x7 basis, who will have to carry on the communication with the hospital for through the stipulated period of home isolation.
• The caregiver along with the close contacts of such cases should take Hydroxychloroquine prophylaxis according to the protocol laid down.
• The Arogya Setu App should also be active at all times
• The person will have to keep a close tab on his/her health and regularly intimate the District Surveillance Officer about his condition for the required follow-ups by the surveillance teams.
Those isolating at home must seek immediate medical intervention if they experience any serious symptoms like difficulty in breathing, constant pain/ pressure in the chest area, mental confusion, developing bluish discolouration on lips or face.
What are the guidelines for caregivers and close contacts?
The caregivers are advised to wear a mask, ensure that they practice hand hygiene thoroughly prior to, and after, removing gloves. They could also use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser. Further, they have also been advised to “avoid direct contact with body fluids of the patient, particularly oral or respiratory secretions.” They must employ disposable gloves when handling the patient.
The caregiver and close contact must also self-monitor their health condition and conduct regular temperature checks. In a scenario where they develop any Covid-19 symptoms, they must immediately report the same to the officials.
The patients have further been advised to wear a triple-layer medical mask throughout the day, which must be disposed of every 8 hours after it has been disinfected. They must also ensure that they take adequate rest, keep themselves hydrated, and not come in contact with the elderly persons. It is also suggested that they practice hand hygiene and respiratory etiquettes.
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