EDITORIAL: The way to go

With the shortage of beds in hospitals and temporary treatment facilities, the way to go is to decongest these facilities by utilizing home isolation for “mild” Covid-19 cases.

By “mild” we mean those who are exhibiting no symptoms (asymptomatic) or those with mild symptoms.

This is the move being prepared by the city government and, at the moment, guidelines are being set prior to its immplementation. The guidelines shall be harmonized with the memorandum for home isolation of the Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of Interior and Local Government 11 (DILG 11).

Indeed, this is a step in the right direction. Cases have overwhelmed hospitals and it is not expected to reduce in the days to come. The surge has forced health officials the city government to heighten caution. Before it could get even worse, we need to install new systems to manage the surge. Hence, the home isolation.

Home isolation for people who are suspected or confirmed to have Covid-19 is appropriate in the following circumstances, if:
• they are well enough to receive care at home;

• they have appropriate caregivers at home;

• there is a separate bedroom where they can recover without sharing an immediate space
with others;

• they have access to food and other necessities;

• they (and anyone who lives in the same home) have access to the recommended
personal protective equipment (at a minimum, gloves and mask); and

• they do not live with household members who may be at increased risk of complications
from Covid-19 infection (e.g. people over the age of 65, young children, pregnant
women, people who are immunocompromised or who have chronic heart, lung, or kidney

While home isolation may be a more convenient mode of isolation, there is one thing people need to understand. Being isolated at home means that people need to stay at home.

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