Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar while addressing a press conference at the National Command and Operation Centre, said he “hopes” the nation will show the same discipline as before by taking precautionary measures and following standard operating procedures (SOPs) as the country completes 100 days of virus infections. “The most successful and powerful strategy is that all people should bring changes in their lives in order to defeat this pandemic,” he added.
Minister said “I appeal to all people to show the same discipline as before. For several weeks we saw people showing discipline to quite an extent and following SOPs but it was set aside in last week before Eid.”
He said the people who were not following the SOPs were not only endangering their own life but they were also threatening lives of others. He specifically urged the trade and industries leadership to play role in acting upon the guidelines agreed by them.
He warned people not to send unverified messages on WhatsApp, saying that “they are not helping anyone by causing panic.” He thanked front-line workers, including health workers, police, and the Ministry of Information staff for their services.
At present, he said that 884 locations across the country have been sealed due to cases of corona in particular areas and nearly 200,000 people have been affected by such lockdowns. However, he said that disturbing 200,000 people at the cost of saving 210 million people was a reasonable measure.
Asad Umar said the disease was not as fatal in Pakistan as it was in the Western countries. In Pakistan, he said only nine people out of one million population had died of COVID-19 whereas in United Kingdom (UK), 600 corona patients were died out of one million population.
Asad Umar while briefing about 100 days of coronavirus in the country, said that on February 26, only 8 laboratories were operating and 472 tests were carried out that day.
Today, he said that more than 100 laboratories were working across the country and that about 22,000 tests were performed daily. But the testing capacity was even greater because the country had a testing capacity of 35,000 in one day.
“The government is increasing beds, ventilators, training doctors, and paramedics so that our health system doesn’t collapse if cases rise. Most of all, the government is focusing on how we can work together with all departments — to shore up our health system for best response,” he said.
He said direct helpline was also being established to receive complaints about the corona related issues.
He further informed that a mobile application is being launched to provide people with information on the availability of health facilities in different hospitals across the country. He specifically asked doctors and other health workers to download this app so that they can provide information to ordinary people.
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