What to do If you Think You Have Covid-19: India's Top Doctors Explain

·4-min read

With an aim to alert and advice citizens facing worrisome second wave of Covid-19, top most doctors in medical fraternity on Wednesday addressed the issues related to the infection cases growing in the country. The virtual address was attended by AIIMS Director Dr Randeep Guleria, Narayana Health Chairman Dr Devi Shetty and Medanta Chairman Dr Naresh Trehan. All three doctors talked in detail about the symptoms of coronavirus, precautions need to be taken if tested positive, quarantine guidelines, use and supply of Remdesivir and oxygen in hospital, etc.

India registered a record 2,95,041 new Covid-19 case in the last 24 hours and 2,000 deaths, the highest single-day tally for the country so far, Union Health Ministry data showed on Wednesday at 8am.

In the virtual address shared by news agency ANI, the doctors explained what to do if you test positive for Covid-19 infection. Here's what they said:

Dr Devi Shetty

– If you have any symptom like body ache, cold, cough, indigestion, vomiting- I have one important message- get yourself tested for Covid-19. It is the most important thing. -In case you are positive, see a doctor and get his opinion. Do not panic, Covid-19 is common now. It is a problem that can be solved provided you get the medical help at an early stage and follow doctor’s instructions. – There is a possibility that you may be asymptomatic, then, doctors will tell you to stay at home, isolate yourself, wear a mask and check your oxygen saturation every 6 hours. – If your O2 saturation is above 94 per cent then there is no problem. But if it is falling after exercise, then, you need to call a doctor. It is important you get the right treatment at the right time.

Dr Naresh Trehan

– Less percentage of people require hospitalisation. The hospital beds should be utilised judiciously and with responsibility. This responsibility rests on all of us. – We have now made a protocol that Remdesivir to be given not to everyone who tests Covid-19 positive. Only after doctors look at test results, symptoms, comorbidities of a patient, then, it is to be given. Remdesivir isn’t a ‘Ramban’, it only decreases viral load in people who need it. – Today, we have enough oxygen if we try to use it judiciously. I want to tell the public that if you don’t need oxygen then don’t use it as a security blanket. Waste of oxygen will only lead to depriving someone who needs it.

Dr Randeep Guleria

– In Covid-19, more than 85 per cent of people will recover without any specific treatment in the form of Remdesivir etc. Most will have symptoms like common cold, sore throat etc. Over 5-7 days, they will recover with symptomatic treatment. Only 15 per cent may go to moderate disease. – Important to understand that most of us who in home isolation or in the hospital because panic don’t actually need any specific treatment. Only small percentage require Remdesivir. Don’t consider this as a magic bullet. – As a country, if we work together, use oxygen and Remdesivir judiciously, then, there will be no shortage anywhere. In terms of the number of people who need oxygen and oxygen supply, we are well balanced.

Meanwhile, India took only 95 days to administer 13 crore doses of Covid-19 vaccine, the fastest country to do so, the Union Health Ministry said on Wednesday. The US took 101 days to administer 13 crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine, while China took 109 days to cross the same number, it said.

The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16 with healthcare workers (HCWs) getting inoculated and vaccination of frontline workers (FLWs) starting from February 2. The next phase of COVID-19 vaccination commenced from March 1for those over 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified comorbid conditions.

India launched vaccination for all people aged more than 45 from April 1. Meanwhile, the government on Monday decided to expand its vaccination drive by allowing everyone above18 eligible to be vaccinated from May 1.

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