New Delhi: India has fine-tuned the guidelines to deal with the rising number of swine flu cases and categorised patients into those who need to be tested for the Influenza A(H1N1) virus and those who don't, apart from the precautions to be taken in each case.
According to the new guidelines, at first all individuals seeking consultation for flu-like symptoms should be screened at healthcare facilities - both government and private - or examined by a doctor.
The patients have been categorised as follows:
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Category A: Patients with mild fever plus cough/sore throat with or without bodyache, headache, diarrhoea and vomiting. They do not require Oseltamivir and should be treated for the symptoms mentioned above. The patients should be monitored for their progress and re-assessed every 24 to 48 hours by the doctor.
No testing of the patient for H1N1 is required. Patients should confine themselves at home and avoid mixing with the public and high risk members in the family.
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Category B: (i) In addition to all the signs and symptoms of Category A, if the patient has high grade fever and severe sore throat, he/she may require home isolation and Oseltamivir.
(ii) In addition to all the signs and symptoms of Category A, individuals having one or more of the following high risk conditions shall be treated with Oseltamivir: children under five, pregnant women, those above 65 years, those with lung diseases, heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease, blood disorders, diabetes, neurological disorders, cancer and HIV/AIDS; Patients on long term cortisone therapy.
No H1N1 tests are required for Category-B (i) and (ii). Such patients should confine themselves at home and avoid mixing with public and high-risk members in the family.
Special: Swine flu
Category C: In addition to the symptoms of Categories A and B, if the patient has one or more of the following:
- Breathlessness, chest pain, drowsiness, fall in blood pressure, sputum mixed with blood, bluish discolouration of nails;
- Irritability among small children, refusal to accept feed;
- Worsening of underlying chronic conditions.
Such patients require H1N1 testing, immediate hospitalisation and treatment.