Amid the growing number of confirmed COVID-19 cases across the country, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has said that very mild/pre-symptomatic patients having the requisite facility at his/her residence for self-isolation will have the option for home isolation.
With the motive to make people aware of the Dos and Don’ts of home isolation, the health ministry has issued guidelines in this regard. Take a look:
Eligibility for home isolation
> The person should be clinically assigned as a very mild case/ pre-symptomatic case by the treating medical officer.
> Such cases should have the requisite facility at their residence for self-isolation and also for quarantining the family contacts.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
> A caregiver should be available to provide care on a 24x7 basis. A communication link between the caregiver and hospital is a prerequisite 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 Aarogya Setu App on mobile, and it should remain active at all times.
> The patient shall agree to monitor his health and regularly inform his health status to the District Surveillance Officer for further follow up by the surveillance teams.
> The patient will fill in an undertaking on self-isolation and shall follow home quarantine guidelines. Such individuals shall be eligible for home isolation.
Instructions for the patient
> Patients should at all times use a triple-layer medical mask. Discard the mask after eight hours of use or earlier if they become wet or visibly soiled.
> Mask should be discarded only after disinfecting it with 1 percent sodium hypo-chlorite.
> Patients must stay in the identified room and away from other people in home, especially elderlies and those with comorbid conditions like hypertension, cardiovascular disease, renal disease etc.
> Patients must take rest and drink a lot of fluids to maintain adequate hydration.
> Follow respiratory etiquettes all the time.
> Hands must be washed often with soap and water for at least 40 seconds or clean with alcohol-based sanitizer.
> Do not share personal items with other people.
> Clean surfaces in the room that are touched often (tabletops, door knobs, handles, etc) with a 1 percent hypochlorite solution.
> The patient must strictly follow the physician’s instructions and medication advice.
> The patient will self-monitor his/her health with daily temperature monitoring and report promptly if there is any deterioration of symptoms.
When to discontinue home isolation
Patients will end home isolation if symptoms are clinically resolved and the surveillance medical officer certifies him to be free of infection after laboratory testing.Follow our full COVID-19 coverage here.