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Austin man wants more COVID-19 at-home recovery protocols

The 63-year-old also has prostate cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD.

AUSTIN, Texas — A recent experience at a doctor's office has Chris Carby calling for more COVID-19 recovery care options at home.

The 63-year-old said he first noticed symptoms on Christmas Eve.

"I had a slight cough and a little bit of a runny nose," Carby said.

That prompted a trip to the doctor.

"Dec. 28, that's when my test came back positive," he said.

 At first, Carby wasn't concerned.

"Aches and pains and fever, and with fever you just feel run down. You have no energy," Carby said.

But when his fever of 101 degrees wouldn't break, Carby went back to the doctor. He didn't like what he heard.

"They said, 'Our protocol is rest, drink lots of fluids. If you have a fever, take Tylenol. If you have a cough, [take] cough syrup.' And then they also said that if you have a tough time breathing or your lips turn blue, here's an 800 for emergency, COVID emergency," Carby said.

The 63-year-old also has prostate cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. He thought for high-risk people like himself, there has to be a better COVID-19 at-home protocol.

"That didn't seem like it was very good advice," Carby said.

Carby even researched online options.

KVUE turned to Dr. Charles Lerner, a member of the COVID-19 Task Force for the Texas Medical Association, to find out what to do.

"Keep yourself hydrated, take cough suppressants, take Tylenol for the pain or the headache or the fever and rest," said Dr. Lerner.

It's the same advice Carby received. Dr. Lerner said it's the same care whether you're in the high-risk or low-risk group.

One other thing you can do is buy a pulse oximeter and monitor your oxygen levels. If it gets into the 92 to 94 range, call 911.

Anything else you read online hasn't been proven and is just not safe to follow.

Carby said he did monitor his oxygen levels with a pulse oximeter.

The owner of Branch BBQ prepares to open his restaurant on Wednesday after nearly a week of being closed because his wife and two employees also had COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control has more information about caring for someone at home who has COVID-19.

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