Public nonchalance aids corona spread

May 24, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The growing nonchalance of the general public thinking coronavirus disease as something not to be taken seriously is aiding the spread of corona cases in the country with the confirmed...

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ISLAMABAD: The growing nonchalance of the general public thinking coronavirus disease as something not to be taken seriously is aiding the spread of corona cases in the country with the confirmed cases rising to 53,493 on Saturday. Of the total 53,493 confirmed cases, Sindh reported 21,645 cases, Punjab 18,730, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 7,685, Balochistan 3,198, Islamabad Capital Territory 1,457, Gilgit-Baltistan 607, and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) 171. Of 1,123 deaths, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa reported 389 deaths followed by Sindh 354, Punjab 324, Balochistan 39, Gilgit-Baltistan 4, Islamabad Capital Territory 12, and Azad Jammu and Kashmir 1. According to Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, 762 new cases were reported in the province in the last 24 hours to take the provincial tally to 21, 645. “Till now we have conducted 123,902 tests in the province,” Shah said, adding of the 762 cases reported, 618 were recorded in Karachi. He added there were 14,078 patients under treatment in the province at the moment with 155 patients in a critical condition of which 34 were on a ventilator. "Of the patients under treatment, 12,424 are at home isolating, 794 are at isolation centers while 860 are in the hospitals," Shah said.

The chief minister added so far 7,213 people had recovered from the virus in Sindh.

Meanwhile, Punjab Energy Minister Dr Muhammad Akhtar Malik has tested positive for the virus, his secretary said on Saturday.

According to the secretary, the minister underwent a test after complaining of fever.

“The minister is self-isolating at home,” the secretary said.

He said the minister had met Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and other members of the cabinet a day earlier.

Thirteen police officials have tested positive for the virus in Sargodha, DC Abdullah Nayyar Shaikh said on Saturday.

“DPO Faisal Gulzar’s driver and telephone operator have also tested positive for the virus,” he said.

DPO Gulzar has gone into quarantine at his home for 14 days,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) Saturday told the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) that its study had found a decline in COVID-19 transmission rate related to rise in temperature and humidity.

The PMD official briefed the NCOC meeting headed by Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar through video link about the findings of its research conducted in collaboration with the Ministry of Health Services, Regulations and Coordination.

He added that a deep study of the pandemic outbreak pattern showed that the coronavirus spread mostly occurred in the mid latitude, which had cold and dry weather.

No single case was reported in the tropical belt during the first three weeks of the contagion rise.

Increase in temperature from 3-5 degrees mainly beyond 30 degree and mean humidity over 50 degree would slow down the virus transmission, he noted.

The forum was also apprised of the testing regime adopted at the airports to contain the epidemic spread.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Security Dr Moeed Yusuf said that there was 90 percent local transmission of COVID-19at the moment and only ten percent were foreign induced.

He said there was no testing done of the air travelers at the airports in many of the countries rather they were putting the masses under self quarantine.

The forum made detailed discussion on the issue with the provinces where the provincial chief secretaries agreed to the idea of abolishing testing on arrival of the passengers and agreed for a strict and proper screening of the passengers arriving at the airports.

The forum, including provincial chief secretaries, condoled the death of passengers of PIA aircraft crashed in Karachi.

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