Apart from Paracetamol, Ibuprofen, throat lozenges and Hydralytes, another at-home Covid essential includes a pulse oximeter.
The portable device clips onto the fingertip and provides a measurement of oxygen in the bloodstream. It works by using lights and a sensor that measures the colour of blood. For example, a brighter red indicates that there is more oxygen and low oxygen saturation levels may be a warning sign of worsening Covid.
Some phones and smart watches have a pulse oximeter function, but the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has warned that these “are not accurate and should not be used”.
According to Australian guidelines for people with Covid, a saturation level between 92% and 94% at rest is a sign of moderate disease.
Dr Suzi Nou, an anaesthetist in Melbourne who has been managing Covid patients in the community said: “Less than 92%, that is concerning: call an ambulance. Definitely seek medical attention.”
Here's a round-up where you can get pulse oximeters in Australia:
1. Fingertip Pulse Oximeter, $22.87, Kogan
2. Fingertip Finger Pulse Oximeter, $50.88, Kogan
3. Orotec Fingertip Pulse Oximeter, $39.90, Catch.com.au
4. Contec Fingertip Pulse Oximeter, $38.70, Amazon
5. Heart Sure Pulse Oximeter, $68.99, Chemist Warehouse
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