- In India, 23 cases of Omicron have been reported so far
- According to the Union Ministry, Omicron has spread to around 38 countries
- WHO has categorised this strain as 'Variant of Concern'
New Delhi: The 46-year-old Bengaluru doctor who was one of the first patient to test positive for Omicron in India shares his account on dealing with the variant that has been tagged as ‘variant of concern’ by World Health Oragnization. The doctor, who wishes to remain anonymous said that he did not have high fever, and only experienced mild body pains, chills, and fever.
The doctor had previously tested positive on November 22 and once again has tested positive for Covid on December 7. The doctor had received both doses of the Covishield vaccine.
Speaking to NDTV, he said, he is “perfectly alright now”. Narrating his experience with the infection, he says, “There is nothing to worry about this variant as he did not have any major respiratory symptoms, unlike most cases of infection with other variants.”
He further said that he didn’t even experience any cold or cough, and his oxygen saturation levels remained normal throughout. Highlighting how he isolated himself before he was tested positive for the virus, he said,
I isolated myself in a room after showing symptoms on November 21 for the first time, and didn’t come in contact with any of my family members. The next morning, I got tested, and both RAT and RT-PCR tests were positive for Covid.
The doctor further added that he was at home for initial three days, but rushed to the hospital after experiencing one episode of dizziness. He added,
My Oxygen saturation was 96-97 but I didn’t want to take any chances, so I got admitted and got treated with monoclonal antibodies on the same day. This was on November 25. But after that, I didn’t have a single symptom.
Talking about his treatment, the doctor said that the genomic sequencing to detect the strain of the virus was done when he had tested positive the first time, whereas the treatment with monoclonal antibodies started on the evening of November 25. He added, “The next morning of the treatment, I had no symptoms, not even mild fever or myalgia (muscle pain).”
Highlighting how he might have contracted the infection, he said he is not aware of coming in contact with anyone who was Covid positive but he was going to the hospital every day for work, and suspects he probably got it from a patient who might have had a travel history. He added,
Contact tracing was done for his potential contacts. In his hospital, except for two colleagues, everyone has tested negative.
The doctor says usually it takes two weeks to test negative after an infection, he is hoping to test negative in another 2-3 days. Currently, the doctor is kept under observation for another seven days and WILL be discharged only after a negative RT-PCR test.
Omicron: A Look At The Numbers
In India, 23 cases of Omicron have been reported so far, according to the official data. The Covid variant found in South Africa last month has spread to 38 countries but no death has been reported from anywhere, Union Health Ministry sources said. They also asserted that there is no evidence of a rise in the number of people getting admitted to hospitals and if this new strain of virus is more dangerous than Delta.
Worldwide, there are more than 1,300 Omicron patients, some 50 per cent of these cases are in South Africa and the UK.
NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ population, indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, that is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.