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70% COVID-19 patients show mild symptoms: Government

New Delhi: As the positive cases of Coronavirus are inching towards 5,000 marks, the Health Ministry has come out with a standard operating procedure (SOP) for the management of COVID-19 patients.

The SOP document released by the ministry is aimed at better management of handling of suspect/confirmed COVID-19 cases. As per the document, the Corona cases have been divided into three categories on the basis of their severity.

According to a ministry official, the SOP would help in preparing appropriate healthcare facilities and using the existing resources judicially when there will be a high rise in number of Corona cases in the country.

The SOP document stated that the hospital beds would only be used for moderate to severe cases and not for mild cases. "Nearly 70 per cent of COVID-19 patients in India exhibit mild or very mild symptoms. Such cases may not require admission to COVID-19 blocks/dedicated hospitals," joint secretary Lav

Aggrawal said.

"Three types of COVID-19 dedicated facilities have been proposed in this document, which will have separate areas for a suspect and confirmed cases and they will not be allowed to mix under any circumstances. These facilities will be linked to the surveillance team (IDSP)," the health ministry official said.

The SOP stressed on testing all suspect cases (irrespective of the severity of disease) and further management of the cases would depend on their clinical status and result of testing.

The Covid Care Centre (CCC), which will offer care only for cases that have been clinically defined as mild or very mild or suspect, will be makeshift facilities or it may be set up in hostels, hotels, schools, stadiums and lodges, the official said.

"If needed, the existing quarantine facilities could also be converted into CCCs. Hospitals like CHCs, handling regular and non-Covid cases, could be designated as the CCCs as a last resort," the SOP document said.

Wherever a CCC is designated for admitting both confirmed and suspected cases, they must have separate areas for suspected and confirmed cases, with preferably separate entry and exit, the SOP document stated.

It also added that the cases must not be allowed to mix under any circumstances and wherever suspect cases are admitted to the CCCs, preferably individual rooms should be assigned.

For the second line of management of COVID-19, the SOP has designated Dedicated Covid Health Centre (DCHC) under which assigned hospitals will need to have beds with assured oxygen support.

The DCHCs are hospitals would offer care for cases clinically defined as moderate and under the DCHC there would be a full-fledged hospital or a separate block in a hospital with preferably separate entry/exit/zoning would. As per the document, private hospitals may also be designated as the DCHC. The third one is Dedicated Covid Hospitals (DCHs) that will offer comprehensive care primarily for those who have been clinically assigned as severe. All the hospitals under this category will have fully-equipped ICUs, ventilators and beds with assured oxygen support.

As per Health Ministry's latest report, the virus has claimed 124 lives in India, while the total number of positive cases climbed to 4,789, including 508 cases in the last 24 hours. Till now 353 persons have been discharged after recovery. In total 284 districts out of 376 are in the grip of Coronavirus.

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