A paramedic takes a testing sample from a man during an earlier nationwide lockdown over the COVID-19 pandemic in Pakistan.— AFP

Pakistan’s COVID-19 case count at 3.5-month high

by Pakistan News
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A paramedic takes a testing sample from a man during an earlier nationwide lockdown over the COVID-19 pandemic in Pakistan.— AFP

The COVID-19 cases in Pakistan are rising with every passing day with 641 fresh infections recorded in the last 24 hours, National Institute of Health, Islamabad’s (NIH) data showed Thursday morning.

This is the highest number of cases reported since March 13, 2022.

According to the NIH, the new cases were detected after diagnostic testing on 18,813 samples.

However, a slight drop was recorded in the COVID-19 positivity ratio as compared to the previous day. The current positivity ratio stands at 3.41%.

The NIH data showed that 119 patients are currently being treated in intensive-care units at different medical facilities across the country. However, two deaths from COVID-19 were reported in the last 24 hours.

CAA warns airlines against not adhering to face mask instructions

In the wake of the surge in COVID cases in the country, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has strictly warned airlines against not adhering to face mask instructions during domestic flights.

The recent warning issued by CAA noted that despite clear instructions, face mask-wearing onboard flights within Pakistan is not being strictly implemented. “This non-compliance is tantamount to risking the spread of the COVID-19 virus disease within the country,” the warning read.

“Therefore, the Director-General CAA has directed the relevant authorities to ensure wearing of face mask onboard all flights within Pakistan,” it said.

Govt decides to ‘fully activate’ NCOC as COVID cases surge

A day earlier, the federal government decided to “fully activate” the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) in light of the rising coronavirus cases across the country.

A statement from PM Office said Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif chaired an NCOC meeting, where he expressed concerns over the rising COVID-19 cases and issued directives to revive Pakistan’s coronavirus response forum.

The premier ordered district and provincial authorities to strictly implement protective measures and take other steps to keep the deadly virus at bay.

What is NCOC?

Established inside the Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA) Secretariat in Islamabad, NCOC was set up in March 2020 in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic to collect, analyse and process information.

The NCOC is the entity in charge of Pakistan’s COVID-19 efforts, policies and implementation and makes suggestions to the Prime Minister’s National Coordination Committee for timely actions related to the national COVID-19 response, NHS official said, adding that it includes specialists from both the civil and military institutions.

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