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July 5, 2020

Smart lockdown curtails corona

Top Story

July 5, 2020

Smart lockdown curtails corona

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan lauded the efforts of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) for putting up a robust response to the pandemic and ensuring coordinated actions throughout the country. 

He said this during his visit to the NCOC on completion of 100 days of its establishment on Saturday. Federal ministers, Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, and high-ranking officials were present. The provinces also attended the meeting through a video link.

“From daily monitoring of the situation to the capacity enhancement of health system and from establishing a credible database to a better resource management and formulation of appropriate SOPs, the NCOC has led from the front in the fight against pandemic, observed the prime minister. He appreciated the resilience and adaptability of the nation to adjusting to the new normal by following SOPs and facing the challenge as one nation. The prime minister paid a glowing tribute to all the doctors and paramedics, emergency responders working as frontline workers, health care workers and the management teams from all the provinces, AJK and GB.

Noting a slowdown in disease progression, the prime minister directed strict implementation of SOPs, undertaking all required administrative actions to implement the strategy of smart lockdown and continuing the mass awareness campaign to curtail the spread and especially prevent any resurgence of disease during Eidul Azha. Imran was briefed in detail about the current situation and the pattern analysis of Covid-19 spread. He was also apprised of how strategy of smart lockdown had yielded results in balancing life and livelihood, keeping economy afloat, and addressing the issues of poor and the working class while containing the disease.

The premier was told that as per the IMF Economic Outlook, Pakistan was among the group of 30 countries having reversed the projected downturn from -0.4 to 1.1 per cent from July 19 to May 20, while exports fared much better as compared to exports from other countries of the region.

Meanwhile, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz Saturday said the smart lockdown strategy of Prime Minister Imran Khan had been successful, as it struck a balance and saved people from hunger and the virus. He observed this while speaking at an event held at the Polyclinic here to acknowledge the frontline role of doctors, nurses and paramedics in the fight against coronavirus in the last 100 days.

The minister emphasized that the world was also following the smart lockdown strategy of Prime Minister Imran Khan. He spoke highly of the medical staff, leading the fight against the virus. The minister contended that people could save themselves from the virus by followings precautionary measures and SOPs while appreciating public for adopting the SOPs and helping in controlling the disease. “Efforts against the virus have succeeded because of a balanced campaign. However, the danger still exists and it is our national obligation to keep following the SOPs,” he maintained. He explained that the strategy of smart lockdown was successful in Pakistan and its results could be seen in Islamabad and other areas of the country. He continued that 771 cases were reported in Islamabad on June 1 and now the number of cases had dropped to 113 due to the smart lockdown strategy.

The minister also noted that the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) in which federal ministers, chief ministers, officers of armed forces and medical experts regularly attended meetings, had successfully and effectively handled the disease. He said the NCOC deserved appreciation for its 100 days of effort. On the front of provision of relief to masses, the minister said the government through its Ehsaas cash transfer programme, delivered financial assistance on the doorsteps of poor people with transparency and on merit and so far Rs193 billion has been distributed among 12 million deserving families.

He recalled that when the virus struck, governments around the world were not prepared for it, and that as the previous governments did not focus on health facilities, there were only two laboratories for corona tests but now 129 laboratories existed to conduct tests and the government had increased the testing capacity as well. Senator Shibli said in the past, all the medical equipment was imported but now the Ministry of Science and Technology had even started manufacturing ventilators in the country. He pointed out that hospitals still had bed capacity to accommodate more coronavirus patients. The minister expressed satisfaction over the recovery rate of patients and stressed that if everybody continued their efforts, time will come when the number of patients would considerably reduce and hospitals will be empty. He urged the nation to unite against the coronavirus and do not hearken to the rumours or false information. He noted that the government had announced a special package for the medical staff to acknowledge their effort against the virus. The minister distributed masks and sanitizers among doctors and the medical staff of the hospital.

Meanwhile, the number of confirmed cases of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) rose to 2,268,68 on Saturday with addition of 3,387 new cases reported in the last 24 hours. Of the 2,268,68 confirmed cases, Sindh reported 92,306 cases, Punjab 80,297, Balochistan 10717, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) 27,506, Islamabad 13,292, Gilgit-Baltistan 1,536 and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) 1,214. A total of 1,265,74 confirmed patients have recovered so far countrywide and sent home. The death toll rose to 4,661 with the death of 68 more patients. Punjab reported 1,341 new cases in the last 24 hours, taking the province-wide tally of infections to 80,297.

According to the Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department, 25 more people lost their lives, taking the death toll to 1,844. Thus far, 42,584 patients have been cured of the infection. 1,341 new coronavirus cases emerged when 7,384 tests were conducted in the province over the past 24 hours. A total of 525,222 tests have been conducted thus far. According to the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), 3,387 new infections were detected after 22,050 tests were conducted in the previous 24 hours, taking the national tally of cases to 225,283. More than 1.3 million tests have been conducted in the country, while 95,570 COVID-19 patients are undergoing treatment and 125,094 patients have recuperated. A session of the Coronavirus Task Force, was briefed that 50,908 patients had recovered in Sindh so far.

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah chaired the session. The meeting was briefed that 92,306 positive cases had been reported in Sindh. The chief minister said 1,25,094 patients of the disease had recovered in Pakistan, among which 50,908 cases had recovered. Shah said mortality rate in Sindh was 1.61%, which was far below from the ratio in the country. He said the province had improved its healthcare system to control the death rate of coronavirus. He said Sindh had arranged better medical facilities for treatment of the COVID-19 patients. “We have tried to arrange separate medical treatment of coronavirus patients,” Shah added. A comparison to other provinces is meant to review the medical facilities being provided in Sindh, he clarified.