Photo from MarketWatch by MARYVIOLET/ISTOCK
As the coronavirus outbreak spreads around the world, Malaysia remains vulnerable to the effects of this pandemic. Malaysia has been placed under a third movement control order (MCO 3.0) nationwide since June 1, 2021. Since then, the movement control order has been extended indefinitely and will remain as so until the daily cases drop below 4,000. There has been a drastic increase in daily cases in recent months, with cases crossing the 17,000 mark in July 2021. On July 28, 2021, 17,405 daily cases were recorded nationwide and on July 25, 2021, the total cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in Malaysia passed the 1 million mark.
In late 2020, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr. Noor Hisham Abdullah said our medical team is already lacking and also facing a state of fatigue. The rapidly increasing number of cases have spread our country’s medical staff thin, as more and more people need to receive treatments and hospitals are being filled up. Therefore, it has been heavily advised that the patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 should be quarantined at home and wait for the relevant departments to contact them.
The symptoms that one experiences may differ. Certain people who are infected by COVID-19 may experience mild to moderate symptoms and are able to recover without the need for hospitalisation. Instead, they would have to self-quarantine at home. Here are some tips for COVID-19 patients when they self-quarantine at home.
First of all, once a person tests positive for COVID-19, they need to quarantine themselves at home and wait for a professional medical staff to advise on further medication. The patient's status on their MySejahtera app will turn red, showing their state of risk. Do notify your friends whom you have been in close contact with immediately and advise them to go for a PCR test right away. This is crucial as they may have spread the virus to even more people if they have contracted the virus.
Secondly, make a barrier between yourself and those staying in the same house by isolating yourself in a particular space and staying away from others in your house. It is important to keep a safe distance from individuals who are at a higher risk of serious illness. This includes individuals over the age of 65, pregnant women, and those with existing health issues such as chronic illnesses or a weakened immune system. The surfaces around the house should also be disinfected as the sweat from one’s hands and feet may contain bacteria and viruses.
Thirdly, a healthy diet should be followed after contracting the COVID-19 virus. By maintaining a healthy diet and taking supplements and nutrients, you can help boost your immune system. In an article by Yahoo Life, Heather Koza, Medical Doctor of Comprehensive Integrative Healthcare in Michigan and a family medicine physician says that eating food that is high in nutrition and taking Vitamin C can help the immune system. Another way in which one can boost their immune system is by resting well and getting enough sleep. Therefore, patients need to get more rest and eat lighter food so that they can boost their immune system.
Furthermore, there should be no visitors allowed at the residence of a COVID-19 patient. This is to prevent the virus from spreading further. Remember that, even though you do not show any symptoms, you could still transmit the virus while interacting with others. It is best to maintain a 6-foot distance between the infected person and other family members if possible. During this period, close contact or physical communication with others is not encouraged. Rather, you can keep in contact with friends and loved ones through social media and online communication platforms such as Discord and Zoom. Furthermore, everyone has a responsibility to stay at home. It is the best way to help our country lower the daily cases.
Apart from that, once you start experiencing COVID-19 symptoms like fever, cough, shortness of breath, etc. do remember to note them down for the medical staff to refer to after you have completed your 14 days of self-quarantine at home. So just remember to write down the symptoms your body has shown and the medicine you have been taking throughout your self-quarantine. This will allow the medical staff to keep track of your health status and determine if you have fully recovered or not.
Last but not least, if someone in your family has tested positive for COVID-19, do persuade the members of your household to get a PCR test. Every department in our country is working hard to help contain the spread of COVID-19. The more you stay home, the lower your rate of infection will be. Moreover, this is the best way to protect yourself and the people around you.
Let’s all stay home and stay safe.
By Wong Kah Yee