Covid positivity increases nine times in a month

ISLAMABAD: In a major setback, the country on Thursday reported over 3,000 cases of Covid-19 after a gap of four months, with the national positivity rate showing an extraordinary nine-fold increase in just one month.

The positivity ratio, which stood at 0.69 per cent as on December 13, 2021, increased to 6.12 per cent during the last 24 hours. 20.45 percent in Karachi, 10.7 percent in Lahore, 7.35 percent in Rawalpindi, 6.3 percent in Islamabad, 5.88 percent in Gilgit and 5.81 percent in Gujarat were found positive.

Meanwhile, Federal Minister of Education and Vocational Training Shafqat Mahmood has tested positive for COVID-19.

According to data released by the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC), 3,019 cases and five deaths were reported across the country in the last 24 hours, including 651 in critical care.

3,019 cases were reported in a single day across the country, five deaths

Earlier on September 11, 2021, 3,152 cases were reported.

Significantly, the first case of the Omicron version of Kovid-19 was reported in Karachi on 13 December and since then the number of cases and the positivity ratio has been increasing across the country.

According to the World Health Organization, omicrons have been detected in nearly 100 countries and cases of COVID-19 are doubling every 1.5 to three days, not only because of infection abroad but also in places of community transmission.

Shafqat Mahmood confirmed his transition on social media. “I have unfortunately tested positive for coronavirus. So far my symptoms are mild and I am feeling fine. Hope he gets well soon with some rest. Please continue to take all precautions especially wearing masks at all times,” tweeted the minister.

Talking to Dr. Javed Akram, member of Scientific Task Force on COVID-19 dawn On Wednesday, it had said the rise in Covid-19 cases was not unexpected as people were suffering from “epidemic fatigue” and given every opportunity to transmit and mutate the virus. He urged people to get vaccinated as soon as possible, as ‘Deltakron’, which contains both Delta and Omicron variants of the coronavirus, has been reported in Cyprus and will reach Pakistan sooner or later.

“I suggest people to wear masks and control comorbidities like sugar and blood pressure levels. They should not go out in extreme weather such as early morning and late night. They should ensure that their drivers, watchmen, cooks and maids are vaccinated as they may become carriers of the virus,” Dr Akram had said.

NCOC data showed that 165,296,972 doses of vaccine have been given, with more than 100 million people receiving at least one dose of the vaccine and 75,686,387 fully vaccinated.

Published in Dawn, January 14, 2022