Rutgers medical experts are available to discuss the need to continue following COVID-19 guidelines despite President Trump’s discharge from the hospital, saying most people don’t receive the same intensity of medical treatments as the nation’s executive leader.
“The evidence supporting the optimal treatment approach to patients with COVID-19 is still evolving, but we have enough information at this point to be able to estimate who will benefit and who is at risk from the various treatment options,” said Professor Lewis Nelson, a medical toxicologist and chair of emergency medicine at the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. “The corticosteroid, dexamethasone, is a good example of a drug that has acceptable risks if the patient is sick, but not so if they are not. Using experimental treatments that aren’t available to the masses outside of a research protocol or compassionate use remains treacherous given the minimal insight we have into their overall clinical value. The best option is prevention of illness, so people must remain and maintain their distance from one another, and wear masks.”
“Some later effects of the virus may not be apparent until seven to 14 days after symptoms, and one of the key vital signs that can be monitored is blood oxygen levels, or oxygen saturation”, said Anne K. Sutherland, a Pulmonary and Critical Care Physician and associate professor at the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and MICU Director at the University Hospital. “Patients who were monitored at home during the height of the pandemic in New Jersey were frequently given a pulse oximeter to go home with, so that they could watch their saturation and know if they needed to come into the hospital for further care. Any saturation below 95 percent while breathing room air is a cause for concern and may trigger a return to the hospital, for further treatment. The extraordinary resources available to the President of the United States in his home are not typically available for other people.”
Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS) takes an integrated approach to educating students, providing clinical care and conducting research, all with the goal of improving human health. Aligned with Rutgers University–New Brunswick, and collaborating university-wide, RBHS includes eight schools, a behavioral health network and four centers and institutes. RBHS offers an outstanding education in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, public health, nursing, biomedical research and the full spectrum of allied health careers. RBHS clinical and academic facilities are located throughout the state.