Delhi provides over 24,000 oximeters

New Delhi: The Delhi government has provided more than 24,000 oximeters to patients who are under home isolation. Currently, there are about 7,966 Covid patients under self quarantine.

Pulse oximeters are used for detecting hypoxemia or low blood oxygen levels, which is one of the early signs of a COVID-19 infection. The device is usually clipped onto the user's forefinger.

According to the Delhi government, they have till now provided a total of 24,279 pulse oximeters. "This has become one of the most essential devices to monitor the pulse of a covid patient. Even when officials from the health department visit home isolation patients they use this device, but now patients are being handed over these equipment," said one Dr Sameer, who has a private clinic in Delhi.

Even though many patients have received the oximeter, others had to struggle and get their own. Pankaj, who lives in Uttam Nagar had to leave his ailing father to buy an oximeter, despite government officials saying they will provide it to him. "I was desperate to monitor the pulse and I brought an oximeter from the shop," he added.

However, Adil, an independent journalist who was tested positive, was immediately provided with an oximeter. "The initial one was not working properly, so they provided me with a new one immediately," he said. The device comprises a monitor that contains the batteries and display; a probe, which consists of light-emitting diodes or LEDs and a light detector called a photo-detector.

It shows two important readings ­— the pulse rate, recorded as beats per minute and the oxygen saturation of haemoglobin in arterial blood. The safe range of the pulse rate is said to be between 60 to 100. While the normal reading for the oxygen level ranges from 95% to 100%. Anything less than 95% and the user should get medical assistance from a doctor.

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