New Delhi: India is witnessing an unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases that has also led to the lack of beds and a shortage of medical oxygen supply in several hospitals across the country. Amid the raging second wave of the coronavirus, the hospitals are facing the biomedical oxygen crisis and are unable to provide it to the patients. Many patients with mild and moderate symptoms who are seeing a dip in their oxygen levels are forced to stay at home and buy or rent an oxygen cylinder.
In view of this, here are the steps to use an oxygen cylinder at home:
Step 1: Check the oxygen level of the patient using an oximeter. If the oximeter shows a reading of 93-94, then there is no need for biomedical oxygen. If the saturation level is around 89 or 90, then make your patient lie on the belly as it is the prone position to increase the spO2 level. But if the spO2 level is less than 90, then the patient should be given oxygen immediately.
Step 2: Put the oxygen mask on the mouth of the patient and tighten it so that there is no leakage of oxygen. If nasal prong is present, then use that as it is more effective in supplying the oxygen.
Step 3: See the reading on the oxygen cylinder and rotate the valve until the mark comes up to 5l/min. It means that 5-litre oxygen is being supplied to the patient per minute.
Step 4: Check the oxygen saturation level of the patient again using the oximeter. If the patient is able to maintain the normal spO2 of 93-94, then rotate the valve and lower the delivery of oxygen to a mark of 3l/min. Now the patient is being provided 3 litres of oxygen per minute. Observe for half an hour, check if the patient is able to maintain the normal spO2 level of 93-94. If the patient is able to maintain the normal oxygen saturation level, then the oxygen delivery can be stopped.
Be in constant touch with a doctor and get the patient admitted to a hospital if he/she is in a critical condition.
(Inputs from Agencies)