Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar has said that the resurge of COVID-19 across Pakistan is getting worse day by day and warned masses that they will be unable to find beds for their patients in hospitals if they neglect SOPs.
In a press conference alongside Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr. Faisal Sultan, the minister urged masses to follow COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) strictly to curb the spread of the deadly virus.
“Back in October, we started issuing warnings and we had anticipated that the situation will worsen if the COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) are not strictly followed,” warned Asad.
He said that back in June, when pandemic was at its peak in Pakistan, more than 1,750 people across the country suffered from COVID-19-related complications and were in urgent need of oxygen.
Meanwhile, others had to be shifted to ventilators.
"At that time (in June), people were concerned about not finding beds in hospitals as infections had peaked during the first wave," he recalled.
"If SOPs aren’t followed, we will be pushed back to a similar situation," added Asad.
Furthermore he said that decision to close schools was not easy one but lives of children are more important. “Mechanism will be set up for education to move on uninterrupted,” said Asad.
The minister also said that mosques had played a vital role in controlling the coronavirus situation in the country during the first wave. Gradually, however, people stopped following the SOPs.
He appealed to the political parties of the country who are arranging jalsas despite the alarming situation.
"It is a responsibility of political leaders to spread awareness among the masses regarding the infection. I would myself fail as a politician if I endanger people's lives and livelihood by holding large gatherings," he said.