In the assessment of a patient with suspected COVID-19, proceed with the following steps:
- Check for symptoms typical of COVID-19; in particular, fever, dry cough, breathlessness, loss of sense of smell.
- Perform physiological checks – pulse, BP, SpO2, temperature. In particular, the patient’s oxygen saturations because hypoxaemia is a cardinal feature of COVID-19.
- If the oxygen saturations are abnormal, administer oxygen therapy until the patient meets the target saturations (94-98%, or 88-92% in severe chronic lung disease).
- Perform a chest x-ray. If the chest x-ray is normal but there is a strong index of suspicion for COVID-19, perform a chest CT scan.