Thursday September 23, 2021

Asad says Covid hospitalisations and deaths on downward trend

January 13, 2021

Ag Agencies

ISLAMABAD: Planning minister Asad Umar on Tuesday credited the government for decisions that he said have brought coronavirus infections and fatalities on a “downward trajectory”, but urged utmost care during the second wave of the coronavirus, which has been deadlier than the first wave peak in Western countries.

Addressing media here after chairing a meeting of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) for coronavirus, Umar said the decisions of the government to cope with Covid-19’s second wave yielded positive results as the number new cases, hospitalised patients, those on ventilators and deaths “have started coming down after witnessing a peak in December 2020”.

The minister said at the end of November, the NCOC decided to close down some selected sectors to prevent the spread of the deadly virus, and by early December, hospitals across the country were receiving the highest number of patients, which have since declined.

Similarly, he said in the second week of December, the number of those on oxygen was the highest and then in the third week, Covid-19 patients on ventilators and deaths had peaked. “After that the trend started easing and now it is on the downward trajectory,” he added.

The minister, however, warned that the second wave had proved to be deadlier in Western countries, where the number of deaths was greater than first wave, “so we should be highly careful at this last stage of the pandemic”.

The minister said the Covid-19 vaccine from China would come to Pakistan “soon” and first it would be used for frontline healthcare workers and then for the common people.

Umar’s presser came as NCOC’s daily situation update showed 2,408 more people testing positive, while 41 died of Covid in the 24 hours leading to Tuesday. Of the 41 fatalities, 36 died in hospitals, 27 of who were on ventilators.

Active infections stood at 34,007, 2,843 of whom were admitted in hospitals. At least 320 ventilators were occupied across the country, with the highest in Multan — 58 per cent — followed by Bahawalpur 50 per cent, Islamabad 36 per cent and Peshawar 32 per cent.

Peshawar was leading in oxygen beds occupancy with 51 per cent, followed by Karachi 37 per cent, Multan 32 per cent and Rawalpindi 30 per cent.

Since the outbreak began, Pakistan has detected 506,701 cases — 8,501 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, 18,429 in Balochistan, 4,882 in Gilgit-Baltistan, 39,340 in Islamabad, 61,648 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 146,016 in Punjab and 227,885 in Sindh. Around 461,977 people have recovered from the disease so far.

The death toll stands at 10,717 — around 3,708 victims from Sindh, 4,299 from Punjab, 1,743 from KP, 443 from Islamabad, 188 from Balochistan, 101 from GB and 235 in AJK.