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'Covid-19 is airborne': Centre in revised Coronavirus management protocol

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New Delhi, May 26: In a revised COVID-19 management protocol, the Centre has said that the COVID-19 transmission is believed to occur predominantly through the airborne route and droplet released when the infected person coughs, sneezes or talks.

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"Current evidence suggests that the virus spreads mainly between people who are in close contact with each other, typically within 1 metre (short-range). A person can be infected when aerosols or droplets containing the virus are inhaled or come directly into contact with the eyes, nose, or mouth," the revised protocol said, attributing the findings to the World Health Organization.

"The virus can also spread in poorly ventilated and/or crowded indoor settings, where people tend to spend longer periods of time in physical proximity. This is because aerosols remain suspended in the air or may travel farther than 1 metre (long-range)," it added.

Drug Treatment for patients with mild cases

Give Tab Paracetamol for fever. If fever is not controlled with a maximum dose of Tab. Paracetamol 650mg four times a day, consult the treating doctor who may consider advising other drugs like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) (ex: Tab. Naproxen 250 mg twice a day).

Consider Tab Ivermectin (200 mcg/kg once a day, to be taken empty stomach) for 3 to 5 days (avoid in pregnant and lactating women)OR Tab Hydroxychloroquine (400 mg twice daily for 1 day, followed by 400 mg daily for next
4 days, unless contraindicated).

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Inhalational Budesonide (given via inhalers with spacer at a dose of 800 mcg twice daily for 5 to 7 days) to be given if symptoms (fever and/or cough) are persistent beyond 5 days of disease onset.

Systemic oral steroids not indicated in mild disease. If symptoms persist beyond 7 days(persistent fever, worsening cough etc.) consult the treating doctor for treatment with low dose oral steroids.

Continue the medications for other co-morbid illness after consulting the treating physician.

In case of falling oxygen saturation or shortness of breath, seek immediate consultation of treating physician/surveillance team, as patient may require hospitalization. Also, patients exhibiting warning signs of deterioration (such as mental confusion, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, bluish coloration of face/lips, dehydration, decreased urine output, etc.), should be immediately admitted to linked Dedicated Covid Health Centre or Dedicated Covid Hospital.

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