Pakistan on Wednesday recorded 1,772 new COVID-19 infections after conducting 39,604 tests—a positivity ratio of 4.47 percent.
Punjab Health Minister Dr. Yasmin Rashid has warned that if educational institutions do not strictly adopt standard operating procedures, the government might have no choice to shutter them once more to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Educational institutions reopened after an early and extended winter break on Monday, with grades 9-12 returning to physical classes in the first phase; grades 8 and lower, as well as higher education institutions, will commence in-person classes from Feb. 1. According to Dr. Rashid, provincial capital Lahore continues to report the highest positivity ratio of all cities in Punjab.
Despite a severe second wave of COVID-19, Pakistan has yet to fully utilize its claimed testing capacity of 57,531, with daily testing significantly below numbers proposed by global health experts.
According to the World Health Organization, Pakistan’s testing policies only record the most symptomatic patients—a belief substantiated by a Punjab government official as the “most efficient use of resources”—while ignoring the spread among asymptomatic carriers, which studies suggest comprise the majority of infections nationwide.
Confirmed Cases, Total – 524,783 (Tests: 7,481,688)
Punjab – 150,889
Sindh – 237,308
Balochistan – 18,640
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa – 64,078
Islamabad – 40,304
Gilgit-Baltistan – 4,892
Pakistan-administered Kashmir – 8,672
Deaths – 11,103
Recoveries – 478,517
In the 24 hours preceding 8 a.m., Wednesday, Pakistan’s COVID-19 infections climbed to 524,783. Meanwhile, deaths increased by 48 to 11,103. At the same time, recoveries increased by 2,046 to 478,517, or 91.2 percent of total infections. There are currently 35,163 active cases of COVID-19 in the country, with the NCOC saying 2,368 of them are in critical condition.
On Wednesday, authorities reported 16 deaths due to the coronavirus, raising total casualties to 4,476. The province now has 150,889 confirmed cases; it reported 573 new infections after conducting 14,007 tests, a positivity ratio of 4.09 percent. There were 583 new recoveries recorded, leaving 135,425 fully recovered, and 10,988 active cases of the virus.
Confirmed cases of the COVID-19 infections in Sindh have now climbed to 237,308; it reported 778 new infections on Wednesday after conducting 11,208 tests, a positivity ratio of 6.94 percent. The province reported 17 new deaths, raising toll to 3,830, while its recoveries rose by 870 to 215,101. Overall, the province now has 18,377 active cases of the novel coronavirus.
In the past 24 hours, the provincial government recorded 253 new infections after conducting 6,509 tests, a positivity ratio of 3.89 percent. Overall, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s confirmed cases have climbed to 64,078. It recorded 8 new deaths, raising toll to 1,799, while its recoveries have risen by 455 to 58,803. There are currently 3,476 active cases of COVID-19 in the province.
The province on Wednesday raised its confirmed cases to 18,640 with 18 new infections after conducting 431 tests, a positivity ratio of 4.18 percent. There was 1 death and 9 recoveries in the past 24 hours, leaving 191 fatalities and 18,119 fully recovered. There are now 330 active cases of COVID-19 in the province.
Islamabad on Wednesday raised its confirmed coronavirus cases by 127 to 40,304 after conducting 6,540 tests; a positivity ratio of 1.94 percent. There were 3 deaths and 102 recoveries in the past 24 hours, leaving 460 casualties; 38,148 recovered; and 1,696 active cases.
Gilgit-Baltistan reported 5 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Wednesday after conducting 466 tests, a positivity ratio of 1.07 percent; it now has 4,892 confirmed cases. The region reported 1 death and 7 recoveries, leaving 102 fatalities and 4,763 fully recovered people. There are currently 27 active cases of COVID-19 in the region.
In Pakistan-administered Kashmir, confirmed cases rose by 18 to 8,672 after conducting 443 tests, a positivity ratio of 4.06 percent. There were 2 deaths and 20 recoveries in the past 24 hours, leaving 245 fatalities and 8,158 fully recovered. It now has 269 active cases of COVID-19.
Globally, the virus has now infected more than 96,625,755 people, with over 2,065,698 reported deaths. After a devastating first wave, the world is now reeling from a second wave of the coronavirus, with many countries imposing fresh lockdowns or targeted closures in a bid to curb its spread ahead of mass distribution of vaccines. Overall, around 69,274,079 patients of the 96.6 million+ infected have recovered thus far.
Originally published at News week Pakistan