When should a COVID-19 patient staying in home isolation go to hospital?
November 9, 2020 12:00 PM NPT
By: Kunga Hyolmo
One in every five people diagnosed with COVID-19 needs hospital care, says WHO
KATHMANDU, Nov 9: As the governmnet decided not to bear cost of COVID-19 treatment and PCR tests, number of people with COVID-19 in home isolation has sharply increased.
Thousands across the country who have mild symptoms or no symptoms have isolated themselves in their homes. But many have a question: When should a COVID-19 patient in home isolation go to hospitals?
Nearly half the total number of people contracted with the COVID-19 in Nepal is staying in home isolation. Of the 35, 419 active cases in Nepal, 29,197 are currently staying in home isolation, according to the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP).
The health Ministry confirmed 2,817 new cases of coronavirus on Sunday. The total number of cases in the country is now 194,453.
The government directed the COVID-19 patients with no symptoms or mild symptoms to isolate at home.
According to Dr Bidhan Nidi, head of COVID department at Bir Hospital, a COVID-19 patient should go to hospital if fever does not subside within seven days and if the level of oxygen in the body is less than 92. “Normally, the oxygen level in the human body should be over 95,” he said.
Similarly, if a person diagnosed with the virus has diarrhea and finds it difficult to breathe, s/he should be taken to hospital.
Likewise, if a COVID-19 patient has chronic disease like kidney problems, cancer, asthma, diabetes and high blood pressure then the person should be taken to hospital.
“The COVID-19 patients in home isolation must check their body temperature and oxygen levels on a regular basis. Patients at home should always wear face masks, cover their mouth and nose while coughing and sneezing and frequently wash hands with soap and water. Infected and healthy people should not share things with others,” said Dr Nidi.
The country is witnessing more than 20 to 25 COVID-related deaths on a daily basis, and almost half of them are dying at home.
After the government decision to not bear the COVID-19 treatment and PCR tests cost, the poor and helpless are compelled to stay in home isolation with minimum safety and other resources.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), one in every five people diagnosed with the COVID-19 requires hospital care.
Dr Nidi also advises the COVID-19 patients in home isolation to stay hydrated and consume enough fruits and other items rich in Vitamin C and D. “Sunbathing is also an effective way of taking Vitamin D,” he added. “In some cases, taking a Zinc table daily and paracetamols 3 to 4 times a day (in case of high fever) can also be effective in combating the virus.”