Centre’s help sought for vaccination plan as record 58 deaths reported in Sindh

Published December 16, 2020
THE coffin of a man declared Covid-19 patient is being taken out of the Liaquat University Hospital in this file photo. — APP
THE coffin of a man declared Covid-19 patient is being taken out of the Liaquat University Hospital in this file photo. — APP

KARACHI: With record 58 deaths reported overnight in Sindh due to Covid-19, the provincial government has sought the support of the federal government to prepare and plan for an effective vaccination strategy.

The previous daily record was 41 fatalities reported on Dec 7 since the pandemic hit and the province’s overall death toll has now reached 3,222.

As the federal government announced that the Covid-19 vaccine would be available in March next year, sources said the provincial health minister had written a letter to Special Assistant to PM on National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination Dr Faisal Sultan.

The minister sought a commitment on the Covid-19 vaccine doses to be delivered to Sindh, logistics needed to maintain the cold chain, vaccination protocol, communication strategy and to establish a dashboard for data of vaccinated citizens.

1,520 patients test positive overnight for Covid-19 in the province

“Pandemic vaccination planning is a combined effort. The Sindh government will not be able to accomplish this task without support from the federal government.

“The readiness for Covid-19 vaccination with the existing healthcare set-up is not possible. We have to start working on our preparations for the effective Covid-19 vaccination strategy at the earliest,” said the letter dated Dec 15.

It also mentioned the steps the Sindh government had planned to develop a robust system for Covid-19 vaccination across the province.

These measures include identifying human resources for vaccination, conducting a baseline study on cold chain availability and required logistics, identifying fixed sites for vaccination, assessing numbers of front-line workers and healthcare professionals, formulating a framework for co-morbid patients and engaging private partners for support in the implementation strategy.

“The Covid-19 vaccination will be an important tool to help stop the pandemic in Pakistan and only be possible if all stakeholders join hand and contribute efficiently towards achieving this goal,” the letter stated.

1,520 new cases in Sindh

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said on Tuesday that 58 people lost their lives to Covid-19 and the record of highest single-day rise ever in fresh cases was also broken as 1,520 patients were tested positive overnight for the disease.

He urged the people to stay safe by washing hands frequently, wearing masks while going out and avoiding handshake.

He said that the death toll reached 3,222, or 1.6 per cent death rate. The 1,520 new cases emerged when 10,289 samples were tested pushing the tally to 198,482 in the province.

In a statement issued here from CM House, Mr Shah said that the current detection rate swelled to 15.8pc.

He added that so far 2,166,999 tests had been conducted against which 198,482 cases were detected, of them 85pc, or 169,385 patients, had recovered, including 1,176 overnight.

The CM said that currently 25,875 patients were under treatment. Of them, 24,965 were in home isolation, 16 at isolation centres and 894 in different hospitals.

“The condition of 801 patients is stated to be critical, of them 83 have been shifted to ventilators,” he added.

According to the chief minister, out of 1,520 new cases, 1,273 have been detected in Karachi, including 422 in East, 343 in South, 220 in Central, 145 in Korangi, 78 in Malir and 65 in West.

He said that Hyderabad and Matiari had 27 fresh cases each, Jamshoro 14, Thatta 10, Sukkur seven, Tando Allahyar six, Umerkot and Dadu four each, Kashmore, Larkana and Naushahro Feroze two each, and Badin, Qambar, Khairpur, Sanghar, Tando Mohammad Khan and Tharparkar one each.

Published in Dawn, December 16th, 2020

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