ISLAMABAD: A team comprising American scientists and paramedical staff of Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (Pims) commenced research on Covid-19 patients in Pakistan.
In the first phase, the team started collecting samples of Covid-19 patients and sending them for lab tests. For this purpose, it also visited Taxila where 300 samples were collected, Pims spokesman Dr Wasim Khawaja told Dawn.
Dr Khawaja said the team would also visit other cities with Faisalabad being its next stop in the coming week.
The scientists are conducting research on coronavirus-affected people in Pakistan, particularly their symptoms and the effects of the virus on the patients, the spokesperson said.
On the fluctuation in the single day count of positive cases, Dr Khawaja said 90pc patients showed no symptoms and therefore did not get themselves tested.
Majority of the asymptomatic patients recover without any medical assistance but end up spreading the virus to their close contacts, Dr Khawaja said.
The virus is dangerous for those with a weak immune system, old people and those with prior condition of the heart, kidney or lungs, the spokesman said.
Two US scientists among its members; team to study symptoms, its effects
It has also been observed that some patients with complaints of flu and cough come to the hospital and get themselves tested, but their results are negative. However, when their CT scans and chest X-rays are carried out, they are found having Covid-19.
Under such circumstances, fluctuation is seen in the number of cases, Dr Khawaja added.
Meanwhile, Islamabad reported two deaths and 123 new cases during the last 24 hours.
The capital administration officials said 4,092 people were tested out of whom 262 were contacts of confirmed cases. Positivity rate in the capital was recorded at 3pc.The deceased were both males and were in the age groups of 50-59 and 60-69. They resided in G-10 and G-8.
According to the breakdown, 14 cases were reported from Lohi Bher, followed by nine from G-10, eight from G-6, seven from I-8, six each from Bhara Kahu, G-9 and Sohan, five each from G-7 and Chirah, four each from G-8, I-10, F-8 and G-14, three each from G-11, F-11, F-6 and Khanna, two each from Tarlai, E-11, I-9, H-13, D-12 and Model Town while one each were reported from G-13, F-10, Koral, G-15, Rawal Town, Kirpa, D-17, Tarnol, Bari Imam, G-12 and Gokina.
Two persons died and 52 tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday with no patients being discharged from hospital.
Jabbar Malik, 60, a resident of Harley Street, was admitted to Rawalpindi Institute of Urology (RIU) on Dec 23 where he died on Friday.
Zakir Mohammad, 70, from Mohammadi Colony, Muslim Town, was also under treatment at the RIU since Dec 23 where he succumbed to the virus late Thursday night.
According the data released by the health authorities, the district had 859 active patients with 33 in Holy Family Hospital (HFH), 45 being treated in RIU and 32 admitted at Benazir Bhutto Hospital.
Since March, 12,631 confirmed patients have been reported in Rawalpindi district out of whom 11,194 have recovered and 520 have died.
Commissioner retired Capt Mohammad Mehmood told Dawn that 15,040 people have been infected by the virus since March out of whom 12,631 are from Rawalpindi, 1,008 from Attock, 943 from Jhelum and 458 are from Chakwal.
He said 13,225 patients have been discharged from hospitals after recovering in the four districts and 622 have lost their lives.
The district crossed the 1,000 mark on Friday after 18 new Covid-19 patients surfaced during the last 24 hours.
The figure has now reached 1,008.
According to health authorities, it is the second highest single day rise since April when the first case was reported in the district. With the advent of winter and non-observance of standard operating procedures (SOPs), the number of Covid-19 patients has increased in Attock city and other towns of the district, especially Hazro.
District Health Authority Chief Executive Dr Jawad Elahi said eight new cases each were detected in Fatehjang and Hazro, two in Attock city and one in Jand.
He said it was also the highest single day spike in Fatehjang, adding that the number of active patients in the district was recorded at 173.
Dr Elahi said suspected patients in the district had increased to 21,018 while screening of 24,469 people was carried out across the district out of whom 19,548 tested negative.
He said results of 462 people were awaited.
The health official said so far 809 positive patients had recovered in the district. — Additional reporting by Amjad Iqbal
Published in Dawn, December 26th, 2020