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How To Deal With Being Sick If You’re Away From Home

Check out these tips to help you when you’re feeling under the weather away from loved ones

We are currently facing one of the most challenging health emergencies of our generation. And while many of us are safe at home with our loved ones, not everyone is lucky enough to be in the same situation when the lockdown was implemented back in March. Dealing with sickness when you’re alone can be extremely hard. With no one to take care of you when you feel unwell, what can you do? We asked Healthy HANA, AXA Philippines’ health and nutrition adviser, for tips on how to deal with being ill when you’re away from home.



Q: “I haven’t been able to go home to my province the past month, and I’m alone in my condo. With many establishments and businesses closed off, what can I do when I feel sick?”


A: Many, like you, were forced to stay in their apartment and condos in the metro, unable to go home to their provinces in order to protect elderly family members. And that’s very brave. But now, with many pharmacies closed and hospitals full, you can take advantage of online and telemedicine apps and services that will still cater to you even while you’re at home.


There are a myriad of subscription-based apps now that you can download to avail teleconsultations. But luckily, if you have a health insurance with AXA, such as Health Start Family, one of the most affordable health insurance out there for yourself and your family; or Health Max, which covers over 70 critical illness conditions; you can actually take advantage of the services of AXA’s medical partners.


If you feel unwell, AXA health policyholders may consult MyPocketDoctor through their 24/7 teleconsultation services, free of charge. AIDE, a comprehensive at-home health care platform, also offers a variety of medical services such as doctor’s visit, nursing care, and physical therapy. AXA policyholders can enjoy discounts on AIDE services and medicine delivery fee is waived.


If you’re often living alone, Health Start is a great starter health insurance for young professionals. Their plans start at as low as P1,500 per month, and you’re already covered in case of major critical illnesses. It’s always best to be prepared, if ever times like these hit again.


Q: “I feel unwell and have been coughing. How do I know if I need to go to the hospital?”

A: Depending on how bad you feel and for how long your symptom persists, you may call the emergency hotlines set up by DOH if you suspect you’re infected: 02-894-26843 and 1555. These hotlines are running 24/7 and are toll-free for Smart and PLDT subscribers. You can also contact the hospitals near you so they can send an ambulance if you need to be picked up for further assessment.


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Q: “I’m currently outside the Philippines and away from my family. Is there any way I can get help if I feel sick?”


A: Don’t worry because you’re not alone. Many overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and international students may be in countries outside the Philippines now and are not able to book flights back in to be with their families. Medical services abroad can be costly, especially if you’re not a resident, so it’s best to always have a safety net when you need medical support.


If you’re frequently outside the Philippines, then you should consider getting AXA’s Global Health Access. This health plan is a comprehensive health solution that provides protection against a wide spectrum of conditions from common illnesses to life-threatening diseases. It also gives you access to the best health solution within or outside the country.



Q: “My throat feels sore. I read somewhere that it’s a possible symptom for more critical illnesses! What should I do?”


A: Sore throat is common these days, since it’s the dry season. If there’s no pharmacy near you, there are many home remedies for sore throat, such as gargling a saltwater solution, drinking hot herbal tea like turmeric or ginger mixed with honey, or adding fresh garlic to your diet because it has natural antibacterial properties. Don’t panic, and always stay hydrated by drinking lots of water.


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Basic First Aid You Should Know And Have In Times Of Emergency


Q: “I’m going out for a grocery run. Is there anything essential that I should be buying?”

A: If you don’t have it yet, make sure that you have a first aid kit at home. This is especially important when you live alone and don’t have someone to run to the nearest pharmacy when an accident or illness occurs. Take note of your most frequent ailments (Are you asthmatic? Do you have stomach digestion problems? Are you often in need of anti-histamines?) and make sure you always have a stock of those important medicines. For bandages and other medical supplies, check out this list by American Red Cross for their recommendations on what should be in your first aid kit.