Serious COVID patients to be hospitalized longer

NHK -- Feb 19
Japan's health ministry has decided to require patients with serious cases of COVID-19 to remain hospitalized for at least 15 days after they start showing symptoms.

The ministry reviewed its standards for discharging patients who have been put on ventilators or ECMO machines.

The ministry says an overseas study found that such patients could remain transmission risks for about 15 days after developing symptoms.

The ministry will ask these patients to self-quarantine in specific rooms at their homes and observe other anti-infection measures even after they are discharged from hospital until 20 total days pass from when they first began showing symptoms.

The ministry will notify local governments of these changes in the near future.

Current guidelines require patients to be hospitalized for at least 10 days after they start developing symptoms, including for 72 hours after their conditions improve sufficiently. After these criteria are met, patients do not have to undergo coronavirus testing as they are considered to be low transmission risks.