New COVID-19 guidelines for rural and tribal areas | Fusion - WeRIndia

New COVID-19 guidelines for rural and tribal areas

New COVID-19 guidelines for rural and tribal areas

In the wake of alarming COVID-19 cases in rural areas, the central government issued new guidelines to control transmission.

The Health Ministry released the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for peri-urban, rural and tribal areas to contain the novel coronavirus. The SOPs help strengthen primary level healthcare infrastructure at all levels.

Here is a list of guidelines issued by COVID-19 in rural and tribal areas:

The healthcare infrastructure is classified into three categories: COVID Care Centre (CCC) for mild or asymptomatic cases, Dedicated COVID Health Centre (DCHC) for moderate cases and Dedicated COVID Hospital (DCH) to manage severe cases.

All public health facilities like Sub-centres, Health and Wellness Centres and Primary Health Centres shall have Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) kits to test COVID-19.

Besides, all villages shall have a sufficient number of pulse oximeters and thermometers to monitor patients from time to time.

Village level health centres can consult Community Health Officer (CHO) by phone to treat symptomatic cases without comorbidities. All such cases can be triaged at these centres. But patients with comorbidities or low oxygen saturation should be sent to higher centres.

COVID Care Centres (CCC) can admit both COVID-19 suspects and confirmed positive patients. But, they shall have separate areas or rooms for both of them with separate entry and exit. Both shall not be mixed.

Each village must conduct active surveillance for influenza-like illness/ severe acute respiratory infections by ASHA workers.

As most patients are asymptomatic or with mild symptoms, they can manage the condition at their home. If they do not have the provision at their homes, they can stay in COVID care isolation facilities.

All suspected cases shall be tested through rapid antigen testing or at COVID testing laboratories.

COVID positive patients shall be provided with pulse oximeters and thermometers on loan. ASHA or Anganwadi workers shall develop a system for this.

Home isolation kits shall be given to these patients. Frontline workers or volunteers shall follow up with these patients.

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