Sindh gets Chinese donation of 500,000 face masks to fight coronavirus

Published March 26, 2020
Murad orders purchase of 290 ventilators; recruitment of 1,000 doctors, 500 lab technicians under way. — AFP/File
Murad orders purchase of 290 ventilators; recruitment of 1,000 doctors, 500 lab technicians under way. — AFP/File

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Wednesday received 500,000 face masks, including 50,000 N-95 masks, donated to the provincial government by China.

A special Chinese plane brought the consignment to the cargo terminal of Karachi airport where the chief minister received the donation at a ceremony under the banner of Pakistan-China national flags.

On behalf of the people of the province, the CM thanked the Chinese government for helping him in the fight against Covid-19.

290 ventilators, 3.2m PPE, 10,000 testing kits

The CM approved the purchase of 290 ventilators, 3.2 million personal protective equipment (PPE), 100 rapid kit antigen test machines (RKATM), 100,000 testing kits, 50 RT lamp testing machines and 10,000 RT lamp kits and 29 portable X-ray machines so that testing capacity in the province could be enhanced.

He took this decision while presiding over the 28th meeting of the task force on coronavirus at the CM House.

The meeting was attended among others by the provincial ministers, chief secretary, police chief, provincial secretaries, representatives of WHO, Aga Khan University Hospital, Indus Hospital, Corps-5, etc.

Murad orders purchase of 290 ventilators; recruitment of 1,000 doctors, 500 lab technicians under way

The chief minister was told that the health department had only 484 ventilators, of them 353 are working, 52 out of order, 43 are yet to be installed and 21 are being purchased.

“We need at least 5,000 more ventilators to meet any emergency,” the CM said and approved purchase of 290 more ventilators in the first phase.

He was told that the RKATM prepared by Chinese scientists had an easy system to test the samples and it was one of the best machines which conducted 10 tests in an hour.

The CM approved purchase of 100 machines and 100,000 antigen testing kits and directed the health department to place the order immediately. “I want their delivery as soon as possible,” he said.

He was told that seven health facilities — Chest Clinic Lyari, DHQ Kashmore, Civil Hospital Karachi, Taluka Hospital Hala, DHQ Sanghar DHQ Ghotki, and DHQ Naushahro Feroze — had been provided testing machines and these health facilities would be able to conduct 1,344 tests in six batches per day.

Covid-19 daily situation

The chief minister was informed that the health department had conducted 3,718 tests, of them 3,304 were declared negative while 413 diagnosed as positive with 485 results pending.

Out of 413 cases, 148 are of Karachi and other districts and 265 of pilgrims. There are 94 local transmission cases in the province. At present 10 persons are in isolation at their homes.

Out of 413 positive cases, 145 belong to Karachi, 265 Sukkur, one Dadu and two to Hyderabad.

The chief minister was told that some 100 pilgrims were kept at Malir and their samples were sent for test. Out of 100, results of 68 samples had been done so far and all of them were found to be negative.

Mr Shah directed the health department to release the 68 persons from the isolation centre but keep their data on record.

The public sector hospitals reported 1,874 suspected cases, of them 93 were tested. The private hospitals reported 702 cases and 27 of them were tested.

The chief minister was told that on his instructions 2,366 nurses were issued offer letters, while the recruitment process of 1,000 doctors and 500 laboratory technicians was in progress.

Visits Saylani head office

Mr Shah visited the head office of the Saylani Welfare Trust in Bahadurabad and monitored their warehouse and ration packaging.

Founder of Saylani Trust Maulana Bashir Qadri briefed the chief minister about their ration distribution system.

The chief minister distributed flour among deserving persons to inaugurate distribution of ration.

Energy Minister Imtiaz Sheikh was also present.

Published in Dawn, March 26th, 2020


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