‘Not all COVID-19 patients need hospitalisation’

More than the people who are detected with COVID-19, people who have some symptoms of the infectious disease but did not get tested yet are fearing their fate if beds are not available at hospitals.

Telangana government Health officials stressed that enough COVID beds are available at government hospitals. They and corporate hospitals heads have stressed multiple times that not all COVID-19 patients need hospitalisation.

Those with COVID-19 and without any symptoms are suggested isolation at home. This helps reserve beds for critically ill patients who need oxygen support and other medical interventions.

While the corporate hospitals are offering treatment packages for patients isolated at home, the State government is offering tele-consultation, follow-up treatment for those isolated at home.

If someone does not have a separate room or bathroom at home, a healthy family member to take care taker at home, they are provided isolation at government health facilities in Hyderabad.

Some patients who are asymptomatic did not wanted to be isolated at home and sought admission in private hospitals. A few corporate hospitals are offering isolation at some hotels in and around the city with constant monitoring of health.

The home isolation packages for COVID-19 asymptomatic patients are offered by CARE Hospitals, KIMS Hospitals, Yashoda Hospitals, Apollo Home Care, Continental Hospital and others. The resources or services provided as part of the package includes pulse oximeter, thermometer, video or tele-consultation by doctors. The services and charges vary from one hospital to another.

Heads of corporate hospitals said that charges for the home isolation costs one-fourth of bill charged for admission at the hospitals.

Government hospitals

When a person goes to a government lab or hospital to give samples for coronavirus tests, health condition of the suspects is clinically assessed.

Senior officials from the State Health Department said that those detected with COVID-19, but who are asymptomatic (no respiratory distress), are suggested home isolation. Besides, asymptomatic patients above 55 years, but have hypertension or diabetes under control, too are suggested isolation at home.

They are issued a kit which includes medicines, and pamphlets which has information including the numbers to contact if situation worsens. Medical teams will track their health condition. If symptoms aggravate, they are shifted to a hospital.

If they do not have a separate room or bathroom, or if they do not have a health person at home to take care of them, they are isolated at government health centres.

Officials said that 80% of the positive cases are asymptomatic, and around 5% are critical cases who need hospitalisation. Those with mild to severe symptoms can directly go to Gandhi Hospital along with their coronavirus test report.

“People don’t have to panic. The government has arranged enough number of beds not only in Hyderabad but in other districts too,” said Director of Medical Education Dr K Ramesh Reddy. He said that 642 patients were undergoing treatment in Gandhi Hospital till June 28. Two-third of beds in the hospital are unoccupied.

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