Overburdened ICUs: 100 new ventilators being acquired to ease burden in Punjab, says minister

Published April 12, 2021
Health minister Dr Yasmin Rashid says the health department is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of critically-ill patients and sudden rise of admissions to the ICUs. — DawnNewsTV/File
Health minister Dr Yasmin Rashid says the health department is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of critically-ill patients and sudden rise of admissions to the ICUs. — DawnNewsTV/File

LAHORE: Health minister Dr Yasmin Rashid says the health department is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of critically-ill patients and sudden rise of admissions to the ICUs.

Chairing a meeting at Chief Minister’s Secretariat on Sunday to review the situation of the coronavirus pandemic in the wake of alarming rise in number of patients at the ICUs, Dr Rashid said overall the number of positive cases was getting very high currently.

“We are enhancing the number of beds and ventilators in all hospitals of Punjab. In teaching hospitals of seven districts, outdoors of four specialties have been closed down. All possible resources are being utilised to control the pandemic,” she said.

The health minister said some key decisions would be made in the provincial cabinet meeting. She said the Punjab government had set a target of 20,000 vaccinations per day. She also said that the SOPs for Ramazan had been released.

Owing to the alarming rise in the ICU admissions, Dr Rashid said procurement of more ventilators and medical equipment would be discussed in the cabinet committee meeting. She stressed that people must observe SOPs and restrict their movement and leave homes only in urgent need.

She said the department would get 100 new ventilators on Monday. Fifty will be used in Lahore, 30 in Rawalpindi and 10 each in Multan and Faisalabad. In Lahore, she said, 19 ventilators were already available. Chief Secretary Jawwad Rafique Malik assured that the Punjab administration was on alert to control the pandemic. He said the implementation of SOPs would be ensured and all stakeholders must work on a joint strategy to control the pandemic.

Earlier, the specialised and primary healthcare departments secretaries presented analysis of cases in their respective departments. All the divisional commissioners shared their updates on the status of implementation of SOPs. Different suggestions were presented before the members for improvement in the situation.

COVID FIGURES: The Punjab government on Sunday reported 64 deaths and 2,515 new coronavirus cases during the past 24 hours.

The tally of total number of deaths has reached 6,972 and Covid-positive cases 248,438.

The highest number 1,408 new cases have been reported from Lahore besides 201 from Faisalabad, 169 from Rawalpindi, 128 from Multan, 83 from Sargodha, 54 from Bahawalpur, 44 from Sialkot and 41 from Gujranwala.

The Punjab Primary and Secondary Healthcare department spokesman says the department has so far conducted 4.055 million tests and added that 202,368 coronavirus patients had recovered in the province.

Published in Dawn, April 12th, 2021

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