Easing pressure

March 28, 2020

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APROPOS the Covid-19 graphic (March 24). With a total of 878 persons tested positive and six deaths the fatality ratio comes to 0.6 per cent. With 394 cases and assuming Sindh’s population to be around 50 million, the morbidity ratio comes to 0.00078pc.

These figures reveal that the federal and provincial governments have done their best despite limited resources. All of the advisories issued by the authorities through the media seem to be having an effect. However, there is more that can be done. The authorities should consider the following points whenever they conduct a review:

When a positive case is identified, then that city and exact neighbourhood should be notified and made public; In mega cities like Karachi, many areas like Nazimabad, Gulshan-i-Iqbal, Malir, DHA, etc., are clearly demarcated, and self-contained cities by themselves. When no case is reported in such areas, the lockdown should apply only on the affected area. Policing and checking can be done at the entry and exit points. Small towns and villages where there is no case should be exempted and citizens ordered to stay in their respective area. The police especially lower staff should be given explicit orders to deal with citizens in a more civil manner. The closure of most businesses will have serious impact on small set-ups. Their partial opening should be considered after two weeks if no case is reported in that area.

Prof Khalid Hassan Mahmood

Karachi

Published in Dawn, March 28th, 2020