Although the CECC has eased some COVID-19 restrictions, at-risk groups should still watch for signs of severe illness before they worsen, it said

  • By Lee I-chia / Staff reporter

People diagnosed with COVID-19 and placed under mandatory isolation before that mandate is lifted on Monday must still complete five days of quarantine, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, as it reported 9,980 new local cases.

Starting from Monday, doctors are no longer required to report mild COVID-19 cases and the infected people would not be required to isolate, but instead are advised to practice self-health management until they test negative, or for 10 days from the onset of symptoms or when they first tested positive.

The new policy does not affect those who are diagnosed prior to Monday, said Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞), who is also the CECC’s spokesman.

Additionally, as some people might test positive for COVID-19 with a rapid test during the weekend, but not seek a diagnosis until Monday or Tuesday next week, the CECC would require that those cases be reported and undergo mandatory home isolation, he said.

In addition to 9,980 new local cases, the CECC reported 208 imported cases and 42 deaths, adding that the local caseload is 8.2 percent lower than on Wednesday last week.

Although mild cases no longer need to be reported starting next week, people with higher risk factors for developing severe cases of COVID-19 should seek medical attention as soon as possible after testing positive with a rapid test to receive anti-viral drugs, Lo said.

If a person with COVID-19 shows signs of developing severe illness, they should also seek medical attention immediately, he said.

Signs of severe illness include shortness of breath; difficulty breathing; continuous tightness or pain in the chest; losing consciousness; developing cyanosis (skin, lips or nails turn blue); feeling unable to eat, drink or take medication; reduced urine output in the previous 24 hours; or systolic blood pressure of less than 90 millimeters of mercury, he said.

Parents are also advised to look for warning signals of severe illness in children, including convulsions, sleepiness, loss of consciousness, loss of vitality, difficulty breathing, sunken breastbone, pale or purple lips, oxygen saturation levels of 94 percent or lower, cold limbs with mottled skin and cold sweats, Lo said, adding that parents who observe these symptoms should seek immediate medical attention.

Additional reporting by CNA

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