What happens when you test positive for Covid-19: 10 important steps

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Those who test positive for Covid-19 should physically distance themselves from others and keep their masks on.
Those who test positive for Covid-19 should physically distance themselves from others and keep their masks on.ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN

SINGAPORE – Anyone feeling unwell, who has received a positive antigen rapid test result, or has visited a Public Health Preparedness Clinic for a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) swab should follow the instructions below.

1. While waiting for your PCR test result

– Patients should immediately return home via private transport (car or taxi) and self-isolate at home until the test results are released.

– Physically distance yourself from others and keep your mask on. Ideally, isolate yourself in a room with an attached bathroom.

– Your doctor will inform you of your results within 24 to 48 hours. Alternatively, you may check your results via HealthHub.

2. If you test positive for Covid-19, you will be issued an isolation order for 10 days.

– Continue to isolate yourself in a room, and avoid physical contact with your household members.

– The room should be well ventilated, with windows open.

3. If you fulfil the criteria below, home recovery will be the default care management model. This is to ensure that hospital beds go to those who need them most.

– Fully vaccinated

– Between 12 and 69 years old

– No or mild symptoms

– Have no severe comorbidities or illness

– Household members should not include the elderly (more than 80 years old) or individuals in vulnerable groups (such as pregnant women, those with weakened immune response or with multiple comorbidities).

You will receive an SMS within 24 hours, with a link to provide your details, to start your home recovery safely.

If you are not suitable, the Ministry of Health (MOH) will make arrangements for you to recover at a community care facility or hospital.

4. If you have a thermometer and pulse oximeter at home, start monitoring your temperature, pulse rate and oxygen saturation rate at least once a day.

– If you do not have these items, a care pack will be sent to you.

– When the pack is delivered to you, you should pass your TraceTogether token (if applicable) to the officer, so that all your close contacts can be identified for contact tracing purposes.

5. You must inform all your household members living in the same residential address to register as your close contacts via the link sent to you.

It is important for them to do this, so that an electronic quarantine order can be issued to them.

6. Start of home recovery

– A telemedicine provider will conduct an initial remote assessment with you to ensure you are clinically well.

– An officer, called a Home Recovery Buddy, will be in touch with you.

7. During the home recovery period:

– Do not leave your room.

– Maintain a high level of personal hygiene by washing your hands regularly with soap.

– Food and grocery deliveries should be strictly contactless. Ensure items you use are bagged securely before disposal to reduce exposure to others.

– Your household should also not receive visitors during this period.

8. You should monitor your temperature, pulse rate and oxygen saturation rate diligently every day.

– Submit your these readings at least once a day via the link provided in your Home Recovery Booklet.

– Your telemedicine provider will be in touch several times during the first week to monitor your progress. If you are deemed to need further assessment through a physical consultation or to need additional care for the symptoms, the provider will arrange for you to be taken to the hospital for further assessment and treatment.

– You may contact your designated telemedicine provider at any time, day or night, if you are feeling unwell. Call 995 in the case of medical emergencies, such as if you experience chest pains and shortness of breath.

9. On Day 6, you can opt to take a PCR test to assess your recovery status.

– Contact your designated telemedicine provider for the PCR test, which will be done at your home. If the test is negative or shows a low viral load, you will be discharged and can resume daily activities on Day 7.

If the test shows a high viral load or if you do not opt to take a PCR test on Day 6, continue to isolate yourself.

– You will be discharged from home recovery from Day 10 if you are well. No discharge memo is needed, nor further PCR tests because vaccinated individuals are extremely unlikely to be infectious by this time, MOH said.

10. Even after you are discharged from home recovery, do minimise social interactions for the next seven days.

Approach your telemedicine provider for a medical certificate if you require more rest.

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