The Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Kerala (“Department”) has issued Standard Operating Procedure (“SOP”) for Healthcare in COVID-19 First Line Treatment Centres.
The SOP has been issued with the objective to provide quality primary COVID care to all citizens of Kerala and optimize healthcare resources.
In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department had previously issued advisory on the three tier patient management system, namely COVID Care Centre (“CCC”), COVID First Line Treatment Centre (“CFLTC”) and COVID Hospitals (“CH”) vide order no 31/F2/220/ H&FW dated 28th March and reference guide for converting hospitals into dedicated COVID hospitals.
Though the Department has established enough COVID hospitals and there are plans to upscale the facilities since it might not be sufficient to manage all COVID patients in the context of worst-case scenario of community spread.
- The Superintendent / Block Medical Officer and the Nodal officer of the CFLTC should co-ordinate with district health authorities and with the corresponding Local Self Government Institution for the smooth functioning of the CFLTC;
- A multilingual display board should be placed in front of the entry gate as “COVID First Line Treatment Centre”;
- Board should also specify that entry is restricted to COVID patients and staff on duty only;
- Poster on hand washing methods to be displayed;
- 24 x 7 security service of Watchman/ Gatekeeper should be provided;
- Facility should be able to accommodate at least 50 patients at a time;
- Electricity and communication facilities like internet and telephone should be available;
- Spacious waiting area with adequate lighting and ventilation and 5-10 easily cleanable chairs arranged at a minimum distance of two meters apart should be provided;
- If facilities permit all COVID patients should be managed in separate rooms with attached toilet facilities;
- If managed in wards, separate male and female wards should be provided.
- Hospital infection control is of prime importance and should be observed at all times. Transmission based precautions should be taken.
- CFLTC should provide basic laboratory services through the existing nearby Govt. health care institutions. This can be operated as hub and spoke method.