Peshawar doctor passes away after battle with Covid-19

Updated 31 Oct 2020

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Dr Sultan Zeb. — Photo provided by Sirajuddin
Dr Sultan Zeb. — Photo provided by Sirajuddin

Yet another doctor succumbed to the coronavirus in Peshawar on Saturday.

In a statement, the Provincial Doctors Association (PDA) said Dr Sultan Zeb — associate dean at the Khyber College of Dentistry — had been diagnosed with the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Hayatabad Medical Complex (HMC).

Expressing grief at his demise, the association said Dr Zeb's contributions to the field of medicine would be remembered. The statement added that his funeral would take place in Buner.

"So far, 20 doctors in the province have lost their lives due to the virus," the statement said. The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has not yet released the Shuhada Package for healthcare workers that have succumbed to the virus and has also not provided risk allowance for medical practitioners, the PDA said.

Speaking to Dawn.com, HMC PRO Toheed Zulfiqar said the deceased doctor was admitted to the facility and was on the ventilator prior to his death.

Meanwhile, KP Chief Minister Mahmood Khan offered prayers for the deceased. "The services rendered by doctors during the pandemic are commendable. Citizens should ensure the implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs) for curbing the spread of the virus," he said.

Pakistan has witnessed an uptick in the Covid-19 positivity ratio in recent days. On October 29 (Thursday), the country reported more than 1,000 virus cases for the first time since July.

In a tweet earlier today, Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar urged citizens to report violations of Covid-19 SOPs on a Whatsapp number launched by the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC).

"With arrival of the second wave and continued widescale violation of SOPs, NCOC has decided to seek the help of citizens. Wherever you see violations taking place [...] take a picture and send it to 0335-3336262 along with the location," he said.

Earlier this week, the NCOC announ­ced a schedule for commercial and social activities in 11 cities most vulnerable to the virus. These cities include Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Multan, Hyderabad, Gilgit, Muzaffarabad, Mirpur, Peshawar and Quetta.

Commercial activities — markets, shopping malls, marriage halls and restaurants — will be closed at 10pm and amusement/public parks at 6pm daily. Wearing a mask has been made mandatory at public places while a fine of Rs6,000 to Rs35,000 and a punishment of six-month imprisonment will be slapped on violators.

Meanwhile, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health Dr Faisal Sultan formally announced on Tuesday that the second wave of the virus has started in the country. Dr Sultan said the public was not following SOPs to the extent necessary for curbing the spread of the virus.