Pakistan loses 67 more lives to coronavirus as situation worsens

ISLAMABAD:  The pandemic has gained momentum across the country, as  67 more people succumbed to coronavirus on November 30 which is the highest death toll in nearly five months.

According to the data provided by the National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC), the virus claimed 67 lives in the past 24 hours, taking the death toll to 8,091. Moreover, the country’s fatality rate stands at 2.0% against the global mortality rate of 2.3%.

The country also reported 2,458 new infections,  raising the total tally to 400,484. Out of  49,105 active coronavirus cases in the country,  2,165 are critically ill and 282 are on life-support systems, whereas,  at least 343,286 have recovered from the virus.

Keeping in view the mushrooming cases over six weeks,  the health experts and authorities have raised serious concerns that the second wave may hit harder than the first if SOPs are not followed.

The historical case positivity rate stands at 7.2% while today’s rate is 6.0%. Azad Jammu and Kashmir have the highest positivity rate at 14.5%, Sindh is second with 10.1%, and Balochistan third with 9.4%. Islamabad reported 4.3%, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 3.8%, Punjab 3.5%, and Gilgit Baltistan 2.6%.

The coronavirus monitoring body has also issued the city-wise breakdown which reveals that the highest case positivity rate was observed in Mirpur with 20.62%, followed by Peshawar at 19.58 and Hyderabad at 19.03%. Karachi recorded 13.9%, Abbottabad 11.21%, Multan 10.66%, and Rawalpindi 9.27%.

Since the pandemic reached Pakistan earlier this year, a total of 5,549,779 PCR tests have been conducted across the country – 40,969 tests in the past 24 hours only.

Coronavirus vaccine on the way?

After Prime Minister Imran Khan approved advance booking of the COVID-19 vaccine, the Economic Coordination Committee, headed by Advisor to PM on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, approved a $150 million grant to secure the purchase.

Federal Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar said on Monday that the NCOC has finalised recommendations for the procurement of coronavirus vaccines. “NCOC today finalized its recommendations for procurement of COVID vaccine,” tweeted Umar, who also chairs the national body. “These will be presented to the cabinet tomorrow for approval.”

The minister said the recommendations were developed by a task force of experts headed by Special Assistant to PM on Health Dr Faisal Sultan.

This article originally appeared on The News International