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Pakistan

Pakistan lacks facility to diagnose coronavirus: SAPM

Zafar Mirza said that the coronavirus is a new bacterium, the diagnostic capability is available in certain virolog
Published January 24, 2020
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  • Zafar Mirza said that the coronavirus is a new bacterium, the diagnostic capability is available in certain virology laboratories around the world.
  • The virus has spread to five countries including the United States.

Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Health Dr Zafar Mirza has said that Pakistan does not have the facility to diagnose coronavirus.

Dr. Zafar Mirza on Friday said that the coronavirus is a new bacterium, the diagnostic capability is available in certain virology laboratories around the world, including laboratories in USA, China, Hong Kong and the Netherlands.

He said that the samples of the coronavirus case will be sent to laboratories in three countries for diagnosis.

Dr Zafar Mirza on Thursday, while chairing a meeting of senior officials discussed the precautionary measures and a response mechanism in the wake of the recent cases of coronavirus emerging across China. The virus has spread to five countries including the US.

The PM's aide told the participants of the meeting that the directorate of the health ministry dealing with airport and port health services has been asked to maintain strict vigilance at the points of entry and check travellers coming in from affected areas.

“The directorate has been advised to strengthen health desk and quarantine arrangements at the ports of entry," he added.

Meanwhile, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has started conducting pre-screening of travellers from neighboring China for signs of coronavirus.

As precautionary measures, PIA has begun to screen travellers at Beijing Airport before departure of flights to Pakistan in view of the coronavirus outbreak in China. The instructions have been passed on to PIA's station management at China and crew operating the flights, informed PIA spokesperson.

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