Health Watch: COVID-19 Advice from Shaukat Khanum Hospital
Shaukat Khanum has published guidelines for the management of Coronavirus Disease, which is available online Here. This document has been prepared primarily for healthcare providers, however it contains useful information for the general public. The WHO will continue to provide updated information to Shaukat Khanum, as and when new clinical findings are available.Guidelines for the Management of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Donate
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is the infectious disease caused by the most recently discovered coronavirus. This new virus and disease were unknown before the outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in December 2019.
What is a coronavirus?
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses which may cause illness in animals or humans. In humans, several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). The most recently discovered coronavirus causes the coronavirus disease we’ve come to know as COVID-19.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are:
- Dry cough
Some patients also experience:
- Aches and pains
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
These symptoms are usually mild and begin gradually. Some people become infected but don’t develop symptoms and don’t feel unwell at all. Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment.
Around 1 out of every 6 people who get COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes, are more likely to develop serious illness. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical attention.
How Likely am I to catch COVID-19?
The risk depends on where you are, and more specifically, whether there is a COVID-19 outbreak unfolding there. For most people in most locations, the risk of catching COVID-19 is still low. However, there are now places around the world (major cities or areas) where the disease is spreading. For people living in, or visiting these areas the risk of catching COVID-19 is identified. Be sure to comply with any local restrictions on travel, movement or attending large gatherings. Cooperating with disease control efforts will reduce your risk of catching or spreading COVID-19.
What can I do to protect myself?
Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself and prevent the spread of Coronavirus disease:
- Regularly and throughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.
- Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene.
- Stay home if you feel unwell.
Should I worry about COVID-19?
Illness due to COVID-19 infection is generally mild, especially for children and young adults. However, it can cause serious illness, since about 1 in 5 people who catch it need hospital care. It is therefore quite normal for people to worry about how the COVID-19 outbreak will affect them and their loved ones.
The best thing we can do now is channel our concerns into actions that will protect ourselves, our loved ones and our communities. First and foremost among these actions is regular and thorough hand-washing and good respiratory hygiene. Secondly, keep informed and follow the advice of the local health authorities including any restrictions put in place on travel, movement and participating in gatherings.
What is SKMCH doing about COVID-19?
In view of the Covid-19 crisis which has affected us all, this year we will be fighting on two fronts: Cancer and Coronavirus. The hospital is moving fast to take the necessary steps in this moment of national crisis.
As a leading medical charity, we remain focused on providing care for our cancer patients, however, COVD-19 currently poses a more immediate threat to these people who are particularly vulnerable. Given the scale of the disaster facing us, we have no choice but to mobilise our resources and expertise towards tackling the coronavirus pandemic, which could result in untold deaths in the coming months.
Shaukat Khanum Hospital is currently:
- Educating and informing the public about protection from Coronavirus and the measures that can be taken by individuals to prevent its spread.
- Scaling up preparations to deal with the rapidly growing number of cases in Pakistan.
- Delivering over 10,000 free tests daily to the local population.
The hospital trust is sourcing testing kits, life support systems and ventilators. For this reason, we remain more reliant than ever on your support.
As we approach the blessed month of Ramadan, please donate generously and help us usher in a new season of hope for all those suffering from cancer and coronavirus.Donate
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