Visiting A Hospital During Covid-19 Pandemic? Keep these Safety Tips in Mind to Stay Safe from Coronavirus
Visiting A Hospital During Covid-19 Pandemic? Keep these Safety Tips in Mind to Stay Safe from Coronavirus : Most of the states in the country are under a strict lockdown due to the rapid spread of the second wave of COVID-19. In a time like this, the government of various states have allowed only essential and emergency travel. The thing about emergencies is that they can never be predicted. Medical emergencies are soaring in times like these and given the high rate of transmission of the virus, going to the hospital for anything other than a COVID related emergency is scary and dangerous. The fact of the matter is that some hospital visits cannot be avoided, be it for a medical emergency or to get a shot of the vaccine, people need to go personally to the hospital.
Hospitals, considered to be the hotbed for infection are still busy treating COVID-19 infection cases. In the past few weeks, a lot of non-critical and scheduled surgeries and operations were delayed or put on hold fearing the virus spread. This put a lot of lives in jeopardy. A lot of people, especially those dealing with chronic illnesses and requiring timely treatment found themselves scouting for help, despite the fact that telemedicine was introduced by the authorities.
Here are a few tips on how to keep yourself safe and protected while you’re there.
1. Some of the hospitals are exclusively dealing with coronavirus cases. Identify first whether it is a COVID-19 or a non-COVID-19 hospital and proceed accordingly.
2. Before going to the hospital or any medical facility, consult online or telephonically first and confirm your appointment so as to avoid any sort of delays or lags. It is always advisable to get an online consultation to keep you and yours protected.
3. Practice good hygiene, paying attention to protocols and keeping social distancing in mind – this is key to visiting any place in mind, including hospitals.
4. Even though hospitals carry out immense sanitation, it still can be an easy way for you to catch infections and other illness-causing germs. Especially now when the mutation of the virus has changed, and symptoms aren’t as obvious as before.
5. Wearing a mask is compulsory. A double mask should be your go-to mandatory item when you’re considering stepping out of the house. Most doctors suggest wearing a surgical mask and an N95 over it to increase your protection.
6. Patients with certain contagious illnesses may be under an isolation precaution to protect hospital staff and other patients, so adhere to any rules that are posted in their room. If you need assistance with isolation gowns, gloves, or face masks, ask a member of the hospital staff.
7. It is advisable to leave children at home when you’re visiting a sick person at the hospital for even the air at the hospitals right now is contaminated, and young children can catch infections and diseases easily.
8. As per Indian Medical Association Hospital Board of India’s guidelines, COVID-19 – Role of Hospitals and Healthcare Professionals, hospitals should restrict visits of non-essential visitors except for certain situations, such as an end-of-life situation. It also mandates that visitors must be over 18 years of age. As per the guidelines, it is also necessary for visitors to practise good hand hygiene. “When visiting, visitors should wash hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser before entering and upon exiting the patient’s room,” the guideline states.
9. For your commute to the hospital, go by your own vehicle if you have one. If you are to take public transport, it is best to pre-book a cab/ auto-rickshaw along with the person accompanying you. And if you are travelling to a hospital in another city, read our blog here, to know what precautions to take.
10. For your consultation, carry all necessary health documents and reports to avoid wasting your appointment time. You may write down all the details to be shared with your consultant or the questions you’d wish to ask to avoid any uncertainty or confusion. Share all information pertaining to your medical history or condition for accurate diagnosis and treatment.
11. If one has symptoms of fever then go to dedicated fever clinics which is present in most of the hospitals rather than going to the routine OPD. This reduces the risk of COVID-19 to others in the event if one has it.
12. If you are going for a vaccine shot, read our blog here, to know all about it and what precautions you can take when you are visiting.
13. If you are a caregiver of a family member with COVID-19, and if you have to visit a hospital, then you should wear triple layer masks and a shield. You should also self-monitor your health on a regular basis and should get tested in case of any symptoms like fever, cough, difficulty in breathing etc.
Once home, take off your shoes at the door, disinfect any doorknobs or surfaces you may have touched. Safely dispose of your mask, head to the bathroom, and remove your clothes. Add them to warm water with detergent to wash. Take a bath with warm water using soap and scrub thoroughly.
Hospitals are now allowing limited visitation, follow the guidelines and do not breach or create problems, it will only put you at risk. Also, it is important for you to not fear the virus; let your doctor be your guide.
Looking for hospital beds? If you are looking for admitting your loved ones to a COVID hospital or hunting for medicines, and oxygen concentrators, social media is a good place to start to amplify your request and get verified leads. Lots of groups, social media influencers and celebrities are posting verified leads on their stories to help each other. Check them out, you might get a lot of help from unexpected sources. Stay cautious, stay safe.