Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
Disclaimer: There is currently no known treatment for COVID-19. This article is for people who have very mild symptoms. However, if you have any trouble breathing, call your doctor, urgent care clinic, or emergency department.
The coronavirus (designated as COVID-19) has not been contained and is currently spreading across the United States. Hospital treatment is the recommended course of action for those infected with a severe case, but in some instances, people may not have access to medical professionals or medical facilities.
It’s also possible that those medical services won’t exist, or they will be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of patients. In those instances, you may personally be the end of the line when it comes to medical help in a disaster situation.
In this video from Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy, Joe talks about the WHO guidelines on how to treat people with mild symptoms of COVID-19. These WHO recommendations are meant for caregivers like parents, spouses, and other family members with no formal health care training.
What Are Mild Symptoms of COVID19?
- Low-grade fever
- Nasal congestion
- Sore throat
- Malaise or a general sense of not feeling well
What Are Severe Symptoms of COVID19?
- Shortness of breath
- Bloody phlegm
- Severe nausea and vomiting
- Severe diarrhea
- Changes in mental status
- Affects on underlying chronic diseases affecting the heart, lungs, liver, and kidney
In the event of severe symptoms of COVID19, professional medical care is recommended. However, home care may be your only option regardless of the severity if medical resources are unavailable or overwhelmed.
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The WHO recommends:
- The patient should be in a well-ventilated room.
- The household family members should maintain a distance of 1-meter or three feet from the patient.
- One healthy family member should be the caregiver.
- Visitors should not be permitted in the patient’s room unless absolutely necessary.
- Hand hygiene should be performed after every type of contact with the sick individual.
- Soap and water are preferred for hand washing, but alcohol-based sanitizers are acceptable.
- Use disposable paper towels to dry hands rather than cloth towels.
- A medical mask should be worn by the patient at all times.
- The caregiver should also wear a tight-fitting mask whenever they are in the room with the patient.
- Think about shielding your eyes as well.
- Stock up on sanitary plastic gloves and masks.
- Dedicate specific linens, bedding, towels and clothing for use by the patient only.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched and don’t forget the TV remote.
- Disinfection should be done at least once daily.
- Wear gloves while sanitizing and disinfecting any surface or when handling any fabrics that have been in contact with the patient.
- The caregiver should also minimize contact with others except when necessary.
If You Are Going to a Medical Facility
- Call them first and tell them you are transporting a person that may have contracted COVID19. If they have been definitively diagnosed with COVID19, make sure the medical facility knows that.
- Have the patient wear a face mask.
- Avoid using public transportation while traveling to the medical facility if at all possible.
Be sure to watch the video below to hear this advice directly from Dr. Bones along with his thoughts on the WHO guidelines.