Isolation is the separation of persons who are ill and suspected or confirmed of COVID-19 diseasefrom those who are healthy and the restriction of their movement to stop the spread of the disease. Isolation also allows for specialized medical care for people who are ill. People in isolation may be cared for in hospitals, in their homes, or in designated healthcare facilities. The length of isolation is the period of time during which the person is able to transmit the disease to others (period of communicability).Isolation prevents the spread of COVID-19 by separating people who are sick from those who are not. It lasts as long as the disease is contagious. In the cases of COVID-19, it lasts for 14 calendar days.

All suspect cases detected in the containment/buffer zones (till a diagnosis is made), will be hospitalized and kept in isolation in a designated facility till such time they are tested negative. Persons testing positive for COVID-19 will remain to be hospitalized till such time two of their samples are tested negative as per MoHFW's discharge policy.

Dedicated Intensive care beds need to be identified and earmarked. Some among them may progress to multi-organ failure and hence critical care facility/ dialysis facility/ and Salvage therapy [Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenator (ECMO)] facility for managing the respiratory/renal complications/ multi-organ failure shall be required. If such facilities are not available in the containment zone, nearest tertiary care facility in Government / private sector needs to be identified, which becomes a part of the micro-plan. There are various modalities of isolating a patient. Ideally, patients can be isolated in individual isolation rooms or negative pressure rooms with 12 or more air changes per hour.

At all times doctors, nurses and para-medics working in the clinical areas wear three layered surgical mask and gloves. The medical personnel working in isolation and critical care facilities wear full complement of PPE (including N95 masks).The support staffs engaged in cleaning and disinfection also wear full complement of PPE. Environmental cleaning should be done twice daily and consist of damp dusting and floor mopping with Lysol or other phenolic disinfectants and cleaning of surfaces with sodium hypochlorite solution.


MoHFW Guidelines for Setting up Isolation Facility/Ward