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March 30, 2020

Two elderly persons die in Karachi due to coronavirus

Top Story

March 30, 2020

KARACHI: Two elderly persons have died due to coronavirus during the last 24 hours in Karachi, Sindh health authorities said on Sunday while 33 more people were also tested positive for the COVID-19 in Karachi, raising the total cases in the port city to 222.

“Two deaths have occurred on 28th March 2020 late night in Karachi. We received the lab reports of both patients after they had passed away and we found out that the cause of death in both cases was pneumonia along with COVID-19. The patients were 83 and 70 years old,” a spokesperson for the Sindh health department said while quoting Minister of Health & Population Welfare Dr. Azra Fazal Pechuho.

The Sindh health department officials said an 82-year-old person, who was a resident of Model Colony area of District East, was taken to the Ojha hospital of Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS) on complaints of fever, cough and shortness of breath on March 28 and late on the night, he passed away in the isolation ward of the hospital.

“The patient was also diabetic, hypertensive and having cardiovascular disease. He was admitted to the intensive care unit of isolation ward on the complaints of pneumonia and lower respiratory tract infection. The patient passed away during treatment within hours and later his test result revealed that he was a suspected COVID-19 patient," an official of the Infectious Diseases Department of Ojha Campus of DUHS told The News.

Following the death of the patient, authorities shifted the patients’ six close contacts including his wife, son, grandson, granddaughter, daughter in law and a driver to quarantine while their house was sealed by the authorities.

Similarly, a 75-year-old person who had arrived from Lahore in District Central died in the isolation ward of Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center (JPMC) Karachi on early Sunday morning. Health department officials said the patient, a resident of Lahore, had come to Karachi but due to lockdown, he could not travel back to his native city and stayed with his relatives in district Central.

“On Friday night, the patient developed health issues including cough, fever and shortness of breath. He was taken to the Indus Hospital, which referred him to JPMC. At JPMC, he was placed in the intensive care unit in the isolation ward where he expired in the early Sunday morning," a health department official while quoting one of the doctors treating the patient said.

The official said the JPMC administration had sent the swab sample of the deceased for analysis of COVID-19 and it came positive after the patient died and added that with the death of this person, the total number of deaths have jumped to three in Karachi.

On the other hand, 33 more people were tested positive for COVID-19 in Karachi on Sunday, raising the tally of Coronavirus patients to 222 in the city, health department officials said adding that dozens of people were pouring into the public health facilities offering the testing facility for coronavirus in Karachi.

“All these 33 new cases are of local transmission in Karachi. Now the people infected with COVID-19 in Karachi are 222, while seven are infected in Hyderabad and one in the Dadu district. Some 14 people have been cured so far,” the official said adding that the viral disease has so far claimed three deaths in the city.

“Total number of people infected with COVID-19 in Sindh are 502 now. In Sindh, the total number of tests conducted to date are 5,945," the official added.

Meanwhile, three doctors and two nurses of the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center (JPMC) have been put into quarantine for 14 days after they treated a confirmed patient of COVID-19, who had been referred to the medical center from the Indus Hospital without indicating that the patient could be infected with coroanvirus as he had all the classic symptoms of the disease as well as the travel history too, the Sindh health department officials said.

“Three doctors and two nurses of ward 6 of the JPMC, who were on call at the emergency department of the hospital, have been asked to remain in quarantine for 14 days after they treated an elderly person as a normal patient, who turned out to be a COVID-19 positive patient. This patient had been referred from the Indus Hospital and the referring physicians did not indicate that the patient could be a suspected coronavirus patient," an official of the Sindh health department told The News.

The patient, a 75-year-old man from Lahore, who had come to Karachi to visit his relatives, had died at the JPMC on early Sunday morning and later his lab test result revealed that he was infected with COVID-19, health authorities said.

Healthcare providers, especially young doctors, nurses and paramedics are facing an extreme sense of anxiety and fear due to the coronavirus outbreak and many of them are under tremendous pressure from their families not to perform their duties, at least in high risk areas and departments.