PESHAWAR: Peshawar district with two per cent of the country’s population accounted for 20 per cent of the nationwide and 58 per cent mortalities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa due to Covid-19 pandemic.
The reasons for the higher mortality rate in Peshawar due to the pandemic are cited as less testing, non-observance of social distancing measures, shortage of public awareness and local culture and traditions.
“We need to scale up public awareness, encourage people for testing and enhance services, enforce wearing of masks and control needless gatherings and venturing out of homes besides deploying government servants to help in creating awareness regarding preventive measures,” Dr Sareer Badshah, dean of faculty of basic and social sciences at Islamia College University, told Dawn.
He said that the indicators with regard to Covid-19 were ideal in Azad Jammu and Kashmir due to higher hospitalisation and in Gilgit-Baltistan where more people were tested and as a result the situation was under control.
KP has 11 per cent testing with 14 per cent positivity, nine per admission, seven per cent are in stable condition, 14 per cent isolation and 33 per cent critical patients on ventilator.
The province has 34 per cent of the nationwide fatalities and has recorded only 14 per cent recoveries.
Lack of awareness and local culture cited as main reasons for higher mortality rate
Peshawar district shares nine out of 10 deaths in Peshawar division, six out of 10 in KP, and two out of 10 in Pakistan, maybe due to low testing, causing less identification of positive cases, resulting in minimum isolation and in time medication and medical care.
The district has high spread of Covid-19, high number of critical patients and high percentage of deaths.
KP has touched its slab from 10-20 to 30-40 in critical cases and deaths.
Punjab with 51.5 per cent population has the highest testing of 42.6 percent, 35.6 per cent positive case of Covid-19, 47 per cent admissions, nearly 50 per cent stability, 35 per cent isolation, 18 per cent critical on ventilator, 35 per cent recoveries and 29 per cent of the national deaths.
Sindh province, with 22.4 per cent of the country’s population, has 33 per cent of the tests.
The table drawn by Dr Sareer shows 40 per cent positive cases in Sindh with 38 per cent admission and 38 per cent isolation, 43 per on ventilator, 42 per cent recoveries and 31.4 per deaths because it has tested more people with more admission and isolation due to which its death toll is lower than that of KP.
Balochistan with 5.8 per cent population has conducted 4.4 per cent tests with six per cent positive, 1.8 per cent admissions, all in stable condition, 7.2 per cent isolation, less than one per cent critical and 3.4 per cent mortality, which is nearly half of the population ratio.
Islamabad, which constitutes only one per cent to the country’s total population, has far better indicators due to more tests, recoveries, facilities and awareness among the people.
The capital city has conducted seven per cent of the Covid-19 tests in the country, with three per cent of them positive with 0.5 per cent admission, all stable, 0.9 per cent recoveries, 2.2 per cent on ventilator and 1.4 per cent deaths.
AJK with two per cent population has one per cent testing with 0.4 per cent positive and 2.5 per admission, 2.6 per cent stability of countrywide admitted patients and has over 0.6 per cent recovery rate with negligible deaths of 0.2 percent, because of more tests and high percentage of admission in better hospital and facilities provided to the patients there.
Gilgit-Baltistan, with less than one per cent of the country’s population, has 1.6 per cent of the total tests conducted at the national level with 1.1 per cent positive cases, 0.5 per cent admission, all stable, 2.5 per cent recoveries, 0.8 per critical and 0.6 per cent deaths at national level.
Published in Dawn, May 27th, 2020