Centre revises guidelines for mild, asymptomatic COVID-19 patients, reduces home isolation period to 7 from 10 days

The change in the rules issued by the Centre comes at a time when the country recorded 58,097 new cases of COVID-19, the highest in around 199 days

FP Staff January 05, 2022 14:52:48 IST
Centre revises guidelines for mild, asymptomatic COVID-19 patients, reduces home isolation period to 7 from 10 days

A medical staff takes a swab sample of a girl during a COVID-19 screening at Siliguri district hospital in Siliguri. AFP

In view of the rising COVID-19 cases across the country, albeit mild ones, the Centre has issued revised guidelines for home isolation of mild and asymptomatic cases.

Explaining the change in rules, the Centre said, "Over the past two years, it has been seen globally as well as in India that majority of cases of COVID-19 are either asymptomatic or have very mild symptoms. Such cases usually recover with minimal interventions and accordingly may be managed at home under proper medical guidance and monitoring.

"Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has thus issued and updated guidelines for home isolation from time to time to clarify selection criteria, precautions that need to be followed by such patients and their families, signs that require monitoring and prompt reporting to health facilities.”

Read the full guidelines HERE

Home Isolation by Roshneesh K'Maneck on Scribd

These guidelines are applicable to COVID-19 patients who have been clinically assessed and assigned as mild /asymptomatic cases (patients with upper respiratory tract symptoms with or without fever, without shortness of breath and having oxygen saturation at room air of more than 93 percent).

According to the ministry, home isolation is not recommended for immune-compromised patients (HIV, transplant recipients, cancer therapy etc) and shall only be allowed home isolation after proper evaluation by the treating medical officer.

Here are some key points from the revised guidelines:

• Patients under home isolation can end isolation after at least seven days have passed from testing positive and if there is no fever for three days in a row.
• There is no need for re-testing after the home isolation period is over.
• A patient may utilise tele-consultation platforms made available by the district/state administration, including e-Sanjeevani tele-consultation platform available at https://esanjeevaniopd.in/.
• A person should seek immediate medical attention if serious symptoms develop. These symptoms may include:
>> Unresolved high-grade fever (more than 100° F for more than 3 days)
>> Difficulty in breathing
>> A dip in oxygen saturation (SpO2 ≤ 93% on room air at least 3 readings within 1 hour) or respiratory rate >24/ min
>> Persistent pain/pressure in the chest
>> Mental confusion
>> Severe fatigue and myalgia
• Asymptomatic contacts of infected individuals need not undergo COVID-19 test and monitor health in-home quarantine

Why the change in rules

It has been noted that despite the sharp rise in infections across the country, most are very mild cases or even asymptomatic.

For instance, Mumbai on Tuesday reported a whopping 10,860 cases. However, 9,665 of these infections were asymptomatic — which goes to point that Omicron, which is driving up the caseload may be spreading fast, but causes mild symptoms in patients.

According to the health ministry, India reported 58,097 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, taking the country’s active caseload to 2,14,004.

With inputs from agencies

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