Sunday, May 31, 2020
Health experts demand 'strict' lockdown to contain surging coronavirus cases across countryPakistan has reported its highest numbers of COVID-19 deaths and infections in a single day since the pandemic struck the South Asian nuclear state in March, prompting health experts to call for a "strict" lockdown to contain it.
According to the Health Ministry, a record 3,039 new cases, and 88 deaths from the disease have been reported in the country over the past 24 hours.
The country has recorded 223 deaths in the past three days, and over 8,000 new infections, with health experts warning of a steep rise in the number of cases in coming days.
On Saturday, the tally of confirmed cases reached 69,224 with 1,483 deaths so far.
According to the official's statistics, the southern Sindh province tops the tally with 27,360 cases, followed by the northeastern Punjab where 25,056 people have so far been infected with the virus.
The government has declared wearing face mask mandatory at the public places in a desperate attempt to stem the fast-expanding pandemic. In the capital Islamabad, violators will be fined and could be sent to the jail, according to official notification. The government of Sindh province -- the worst hit by the pandemic -- suggests a 14-day "effective" lockdown to slow down the pace of the rising number of cases."Only an effective lockdown throughout the country for 14 days can stem from the rising wave of coronavirus cases. But the federal government seems to be in no mood to go for that," Murtaza Wahab, a spokesman for the Sindh government told reporters, referring to the lifting of lockdown restrictions, including the resumption of train service, and flight operation.
Echoing Wahab's view, Dr. Qaisar Sajjad, the secretary-general of Pakistan Medical Association -- a nationwide body of health professionals -- said: "The lockdown at this stage can yield some results only if it is enforced across the country under a uniform policy. Otherwise, it will have no impact".
"And there should be no confusion this time," he told Anadolu Agency referring to Prime Minister Imran Khan's continuous opposition to complete lockdown. Globally, more than 6 million cases have been confirmed in 188 countries and regions since the virus emerged in China last year.
The pandemic has killed nearly 370,000 people worldwide, while over 2.58 million people have recovered so far, according to figures compiled by the Johns Hopkins University of the US.
Eight doctors of Lahore Shaikh Zayed hospital tested positive for coronavirus on Saturday, creating a grave concern among the medical staff figting against the pandemic on the frontline.
Sources in SZMCH told this correspondent that, Dr Mahboob Gillani of Services Hospital has also been diagnosed with coronavirus.
According to statistics provided by the official government website on the coronavirus situation in Pakistan, Pakistan topped its previous record number of new COVID-19 cases reported over 24 hours, 2,636, on May 28.
Pakistan had reported a record number of coronavirus deaths in a single day when 88 new fatalities took place across the country on May 30. A day before, it had set the record for the most number of COVID-19 deaths over the past 24 hours when 78 people succumbed to the virus.
The country has so far reported more than 69,400 COVID-19 cases with doctors and health experts warning that the number of coronavirus cases will continue to rise unless a strict lockdown is not imposed.
#CoronavirusPandemic #COVID19 #Pakistan - Infectious stories - Mixed messages from political and social leaders have fed the doubts
Many are having a hard time comprehending the coronavirus in Pakistan.
They have not seen it before; it has no distinctive symptoms; there have been very few deaths in most communities; it hasn’t yet penetrated rural areas where half the population lives. This lived experience makes it hard to relate to what they are being told by the rest of the world — that they are threatened by a lethal pandemic that calls for extreme constraints on how they live.