KARACHI: Pakistan is currently experiencing the fourth wave of Covid-19 on an upward trajectory. The Indian Delta variant has hit Karachi the most. This emerged in the National Command and Operations Center (NOC) meeting hosted by Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah here at the CM House Saturday.
The meeting was attended by Federal Minister Asad Umar, Lt Gen Hamood-uz-Zaman, Special Assistant to PM on CPEC Khalid Mansoor, Maj Gen Asif Mahmood.
The CM was assisted by provincial ministers, Dr Azra Pechuho, Saeed Ghani, Syed Nasir Shah, Syed Sardar Shah, Advisor Law Murtaza Wahab, Parliamentary Secretary on Health Qasim Soomro, Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, IG Sindh Mushtaq Maher, PSCM Sajid Jamal Abro, Secretary Health Dr Kazim Jatoi, Dr Faisal, Dr Sara Khan, Prof Saeed Qureshi and other concerned.
Based on high positivity, hospital inflow and pressure on critical care occupancy has increased, therefore the Sindh government placed stringent measures for control of rising disease situation in the province, especially in Karachi from 31 July – 8 August, the meeting was informed.
It was pointed out that 67 percent of total positive cases have emerged from Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Rawalpindi and Hyderabad.
It was disclosed that in Sindh all-time highest numbers, High Flow oxygen occupancy nearly reached 80 percent of capacity despite the ramp. The pressure on the health care system was expected to continue for weeks, therefore the addition of more beds in the healthcare system was decided and urged the health department that the capacity utilization be kept below 70 percent to avoid the pressure. It was pointed out that a similar pressure was also building up in KPK and Punjab.
The meeting was told that in Karachi 1,195 patients were in critical care on August 6 and within two days their number increased to 1,210 on August 7. The chief minister said that he has added 165 beds in the critical care system of Karachi and now the number has increased to 404.
The meeting was told that the hospitals in the country were under pressure. During the current week, 562 patients have been admitted in hospitals all over Pakistan. In Sindh alone 176 patients were admitted and 159 in Punjab, 175 in KPK, and 36 in Islamabad 13 in AJK, and four in Balochistan. It was pointed out that on average over 500 patients were being admitted in hospitals on a daily basis in addition to 70 to 80 patients in critical care on a daily basis in the country.
The NCOC sharing positive cases disclosed that Karachi accounts for 79 percent cases in the province. During the current week Karachi has 1,0591 positive cases that constituted 21.4 percent and Hyderabad has 15 percent. It was pointed out that in Sindh cases had increased from July 26 to August 1. Karachi had 21 percent cases which increased to 23.2 percent. Similarly, Hyderabad increased from 6.6 percent to 11.7 percent, Badin from 4.7 percent to 10.8 percent, Thatta increased from 3.7 percent to 7.5, Tharparkar increased from 2.7 percent to 8.1 percent, Sanghar 5.1 percent to 7.6 percent, Matiari 2.7 percent to 6.3 percent, Jamshoro increased from 3.4 percent to 6.9 percent, Mirpurkhas 2.4 percent to 5.7 percent and Shaheed Benazirabad from 3.5 percent to 5 percent.
Sharing the ratio of positive cases and their trend, it was pointed out that Karachi had 24.2 percent cases which have come down slightly to 21.4 percent during the current week. Muzaffarabad had shown an increase from 17.5 percent to 19.2 percent, Rawalpindi increased from 10.3 percent to 17.7 percent, Peshawar increased from 13 percent to 16.3 percent, Hyderabad 10.4 percent to 15 percent, Mirpur has shown a decline from 10.9 to 10.7, Islamabad has shown an increase from 9 percent to 10.3 percent.
Currently, 102 patients are on ventilators in Karachi, one in Hyderabad, 22 in Rawalpindi, 36 in Peshawar, 43 in Islamabad, 20 in Bahawalpur and 10 in Gujranwala. Karachi has 1569 or 20.88 percent COVID cases, Hyderabad 164 or 15.36 percent cases, Rawalpindi 219 or 27.24 percent cases, Peshawar 222 or 17.34 percent cases, Muzaffarabad 57 or 23.65 percent cases and Mirpur 33 or 19.53 percent cases.
In Sindh the positivity percentage has come down from 13.7 percent to 11.9 percent. AJK has shown an increase from 23.6 percent to 26 percent, Balochistan has also come down from 4.9 percent to 4.4 percent, GB has come down from 10.4 percent to 8.7 percent, Punjab has shown an increase in the cases from 4.6 percent to 5.4 percent but KPK has come down from 4.8 percent to 4.2 percent and Islamabad has shown an increase of 10.6 percent to 12.1 percent.
Mortality rate: The meeting was told that mortality has also started to rise again after a consistent downward trend for two weeks in the country. During the last six days 63 patients have died on average. It was pointed out that the rising death toll was likely to continue until the load on critical care subsided.
The mortality trend shows that from 5 July to 1 August, some 285 patients died in the Punjab, 489 in Sindh, 125 in KPK, 24 in Islamabad, 39 in AJK and 14 in Balochistan.
The meeting was told through presentations that the country was likely to witness a rise in disease during the coming weeks of August if SOPs were not followed; hence it necessitates adherence to SOPs to arrest chances of further spread.
The meeting also agreed to issue SOPs for Muharram starting from August 9.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021