Coronavirus. Prevention and vaccination

What should you do if you get COVID-19?

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1. Coronavirus infection can be suspected if the following symptoms occur:

  • the “classical” symptoms of the coronavirus infection include dry cough, loss of smell and taste;
  • general malaise, body temperature rising above 37°С (98.6°F);
  • clinical manifestations of acute respiratory infection, such as runny nose, sore throat, headache, and body aches.
All symptoms develop in an escalating pattern.

The epidemiological history is important:

  • have you visited epidemically unstable countries and regions within 14 days prior to onset of the Covid-19 symptoms?
  • within the last 14 days, have you been in close contact with persons who were suspected of Covid-19 and later got sick?
  •  within the last 14 days, have you been in close contact with persons who had been diagnosed with Covid-19 after lab examination?
2. What should you do if you suspect you have been infected by the coronavirus?

  • Arrange a home visit for a doctor from the local clinic at your actual place of residence. The only requirement is that you have a Compulsory Medical Insurance (CMI) policy.·     
  •   If you are a RANEPA student living on the main campus (Vernadsky Avenue), you should contact the emergency room of our medical center at +7 (963) 605-27-51.
  • Do not self-medicate! Further treatment and diagnostic tactics will be determined by the physician!

All exposed persons are monitored at their place of residence in the dormitory (hotel) with daily thermometry and telephone interviews (and an examination, if necessary). Exposed persons are also screened for the first signs of illness.

3. Does a negative nasopharyngeal PCR swab mean I am not infected?

The PCR test is the main method for detecting the infection (or confirming its absence), as recommended by the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation. PCR, short for Polymerase Chain Reaction, is a highly accurate molecular genetic test that can detect viral pathologies.
However, a negative test result does not guarantee that the virus is not in the body. Further diagnostic methods are available, including a test for antibodies, or immunoglobulins. These tests help ascertain the stage of the disease.
Nasopharyngeal PCR swabs may be negative because the virus may have entered the multiplication phase, where it is no longer detectable in the nasopharynx. However, it can be excreted into the environment through the gastrointestinal tract or from the lungs.
In this case, further investigations are necessary. If the immunoglobulin test reveals immunoglobulin M, that is a signal to extend self-isolation.
It is important to remember that coronavirus testing for employees without symptoms is done at the employer’s expense.

4. If you are instructed to stay at home.

If you are instructed to stay at home, you must:

  • observe “respiratory” etiquette: cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, or cough and sneeze into a sleeve;
  • observe hand hygiene;
  • if possible, limit close contact (within about 1m) with other people.

5. How can I avoid the spread of the infection?

  • Contacts with people outside your home should be limited as much as possible.
  • If possible, only one person should supervise the patient.
  • It is important for the patient to wear the mask at home as the first priority. It is not necessary to wear the mask all day; it should only be worn when close contact (within about 1 m) is expected with the person providing care, or with other people.

6. What kind of masks can I use?

Special medical masks and reusable fabric masks can be used, as well as scarves tightly fitting to the face.

The mask must be changed as soon as it becomes wet.

If medical masks cannot be purchased, makeshift rectangular face masks consisting of four layers of gauze can be used. These should be large enough to completely cover the nose, mouth, cheeks and chin, and should be secured to the back of the head with four straps.

If makeshift gauze masks must be reused, they should be treated in a boiling solution of any detergent for 15 minutes. Gauze masks can also be washed in the washing machine in boiling mode at 95 °C.

After washing, the gauze mask must be ironed on both sides at the temperature recommended for cotton products.

7. What should I do if a family member has contracted the coronavirus?

  • Covid-19 caregivers should use medical masks. Wash hands thoroughly after each contact with the patient.
  • All family members need to observe proper “respiratory etiquette” and hand hygiene.
  • Keep your windows open if possible, or ensure the rooms are aired regularly.
  • All household surfaces should be washed regularly with soap and water or disinfectant.

It is important to remember that people who have recovered are not contagious and can be considered immune to the disease. This period usually occurs 2-3 weeks after the onset of the first symptoms of the disease.

8. When should I call an ambulance?

Call an ambulance if your condition worsens or if the following symptoms occur:

  • weakness, inability to stand up;
  • drowsiness;
  • unconsciousness;
  • cramps;
  • extreme difficulty breathing;
  • inability to drink fluids and dehydration;
  • high fever above 38.5°C (100.4°F).

The ambulance number is 103.

9. Why get a flu shot during a coronavirus pandemic?

Influenza vaccination reduces the number of cases with a complicated course of coronavirus.

Influenza vaccination is carried out in accordance with the decree of the Chief State Sanitary Physician of the Russian Federation.

10. Where can educators and students get educational, legal and organizational information?

The Russian Ministry of Education and Science has set up a situation center for operational support to educational organizations, students and teachers on the transition to mixed and distance learning in connection with the unfavorable situation caused by the new coronavirus infection (COVID-2019).

Situation Center Hotline: +7 (495) 198-00-00 (8:00-20:00 Moscow time).

The hotline provides all necessary information on educational, legal and organizational issues.

The instructions on entry to the Russian territory and the passage to the territory of the Academy for foreign students can be found in this news article.

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