The decision was made since about 10% of the patients who tested positive for Covid-19 have been remaining unwell after three weeks and a smaller proportion even for months.
According to international studies, most patients with Covid-19 experience mild symptoms and moderate illness. About 10 to 15% of cases progress to severe disease and about 5% become critically ill. People usually recover from Covid between two to six weeks. However, for a few, some symptoms may linger or recur for weeks or even months. As per the guidelines issued by the department, all cured patients have been asked to visit their nearest primary health centre, community health centre, or family health centre. Such clinics will be set up at taluk headquarters hospitals, district hospitals, general hospitals and medical college hospitals as referral centres.
The telemedicine platform will be used extensively at the primary level for obtaining specialist consultation from the referral centres. A team of doctors will be formed in referral centres to provide special treatment and for providing telemedicine consultations.
An online training module has been prepared by experts from the medical college hospitals for use by these clinics. The field staff and Asha workers will be sensitised about post-Covid-19 clinics and they will have the responsibility to mobilise the beneficiaries to the centres. These field staff and Asha workers will also maintain a record of the health status of the people not attending the clinics.
Patients requiring specialist follow-up such as pulmonary rehabilitation for lung fibrosis, neurological rehabilitation for stroke syndromes, ventricular dysfunction, cardiomyopathy, etc, will be referred to specialist services at the district or general hospitals or medical college hospitals.
As per the advisories issued, any patient who recovered from Covid with severe complications will be linked to the Covid hospital from where they had received treatment. Support of institutional or state medical boards can also be sought in such cases.