Counsel patients with mild COVID-19 and their caregivers about the signs and symptoms of complications that should prompt urgent care. If the patient has any concerns or signs of deterioration, they should consult a health-care practitioner in person through urgent care, emergency department or 9-1-1.
If they develop any of the symptoms below, they should be referred for further assessment:
- Uunstable vitals
- Sustained or downward trending SpO2≤93% (or <90% with a chronic lung condition)
- Shortness of breath, pain or pressure in the chest, confusion, drowsiness, or weakness
- Any other deterioration in status
If the patient’s status deteriorates and they require a higher level of care or cannot be managed at home, refer to hospital. Maintain a low threshold for referring patients to hospital.
Early identification of those with severe illness, pneumonia, or high risk for deterioration allows for optimized supportive care treatments and safe, rapid referral and admission to a hospital.
Identify if there is an advance care plan and clarify code status. Complete a
for patients at risk of decompensation or being referred to hospital, see the
MOST form summary
. Palliative care should be explored early if appropriate.
If transferring a patient from the community to an acute care facility, notify BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS) and the receiving facility prior to transfer/arrival to ensure appropriate infection prevention and control measures can be put in place.