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Health Advisory to Citizens of India residing in Portugal ( 30.03.2020)

Posted on: March 31, 2020 | Back | Print

Embassy of India Lisbon
Health Advisory

 The COVID-19 pandemic is rapidly spreading in Portugal and there has been more than 6000 cases and 140 deaths so far. Therefore, we request our fellow Indian citizens to follow these necessary health precautions to stay safe during this crisis.

1.    Portugal is so far sufficient in dealing with the pandemic and its public health system is geared fully. The peak increase in cases is expected in 2 weeks or so. Therefore, it is most important to isolate, maintain social distancing, observe hygiene and follow prescribed precautions.

2.    Normally, it takes 2 to 14 days from the day of exposure to the virus for symptoms to manifest. In the majority of cases, the symptoms include fatigue, body aches and joint pain, with persistent dry cough and fever. In general, persons below 65 years of age, with no underlying health conditions like diabetes, asthma etc. and with normal immunity, are not likely to be seriously infected. In most cases, recovery is possible at home.

3.    If you are in the above category, doctors advise staying isolated at home and taking Paracetamol to manage the fever, steam inhalation, gargling with Betadine solution and keeping yourself warm and hydrated with warm soups, water etc. Kindly note that NHS doctors advise against taking ibuprofen.

4.    You can call the toll-free SNS COVID-19 Emergency 24x7 helpline: 808242424 for medical guidance too. They offer services in English, apart from Portuguese. However, owing to the large number of calls, it is likely that the helplines may not be accessible.

5.    If you develop breathlessness or have difficulty breathing or a sensation of drowning, it may be taken seriously. At this point, it is strongly recommended that you visit the nearest public hospital immediately. You can drive to the hospital directly if needed, without waiting for an ambulance.

6.    Portuguese public hospitals are treating all patients, including foreigners and Indian nationals, regardless of their visa status, at a modest registration fee of around 18 euros. It may be noted that at present, Covid-19 tests are being done only in hospitals on the basis of a doctor's prescription and not on self-reference.

7.    If you are an Indian citizen without a valid Portuguese visa or residence permit, you can still go to any public hospital for treatment since the Portuguese government has announced that all foreigners in Portugal will be considered as residents of Portugal until 30th June in view of the pandemic and will be treated on par with  Portuguese citizens.

8.    After recovery, it's advisable to self-isolate for 3 weeks before resuming normal life in order to prevent transmission to others.

9.    It has also come to the notice of the Embassy that some WhatsApp messages are doing the rounds saying that evacuation flights to India are being planned in the coming week. Please note that this is false news. Kindly ignore these messages and refrain from sharing them. The Embassy regularly updates the latest information regarding the situation on its Facebook page, Twitter and website, and only this may be treated as authentic.

10.In case of emergency, please reach out to Embassy’s helpline numbers (24x7) for immediate help

Telephone - +351-916653752
+351-913299634 (WhatsApp) 
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/IndiaInPortugal/
Twitter - https://twitter.com/IndiainPortugal
Website - https://www.eoilisbon.gov.in/