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WHO recommends new advice for COVID-19 treatment

BY: Kweku Zurek
WHO recommends new advice for COVID-19 treatment
WHO recommends new advice for COVID-19 treatment

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has issued new advice on how to treat patients suffering from COVID-19.

For COVID-19 patients at home, the WHO is suggesting the use of a pulse oximetry machine to measure oxygen levels in the blood - but warns that this needs to be coordinated with other aspects of home care, such as education for the patient and care provider and regular follow-up of the patient.

For hospitalized patients, the WHO is now suggesting the use of low dose anticoagulants for preventing blood clots from forming in the blood vessels (thrombosis).

For hospitalized patients who are taking supplemental oxygen (including high-flow nasal oxygen) or from ventilators, the WHO suggests positioning patients on their stomachs to increase oxygen flow (awake prone positioning).

"The guidelines also include recommendations on the use of care bundles to systematize care provision for COVID-19 patients, as well as a recommendation to favour clinical judgement over models in making decisions for the patient’s care," the WHO said in revised clinical management guidelines on Tuesday.

"The recommendations were made by an independent panel of experts, the Guideline Development Group, on the basis of detailed rapid reviews of all available evidence".

The WHO also recommends that patients who have COVID-19 - both confirmed and suspected - should have access to follow-up care if they have persistent, new or changing symptoms.