Corona cases rate below 8pc: Dr Yasmin Says govt plans to vaccinate 450,000 people daily

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Staff Reporter

Punjab Health Minister Yasmin Rashid on Sunday declared that positivity ratio of Coronavirus infection in major Punjab cities including Rawalpindi, Lahore, and Multan has fallen below 8%.

“The Punjab government has increased the number of tests conducted on daily basis while 901 people were tested positive for the virus and 29 lost their lives to the deadly virus during the last 24 hours.”

In a media briefing on Sunday, Dr Yasmin Rashid claimed that for the first time during the third wave of Corona, the daily number of cases in the province has dropped below 1,000, adding that the infection rate in Rawalpindi, one of the most affected cities, was recorded at 3.5% on Sunday.

The minister said that the provincial government now is injecting vaccine to 140,000 people daily and in the coming weeks the capacity will be enhanced to 450,000 daily,” she added.

She said Punjab is leading in vaccination campaign as the province has administered its 2.8 million residents so far against the coronavirus.

Dr Yasmin Rashid pointed out that Pakistanis should have some realization that God has been very kind to them in comparison to neighbouring India and they must adhere to the corona SOPs strictly along with the inoculation of vaccine.

According to the minister, there are eight districts in the province where the infection rate is above 8%. These are Rajanpur, Layyah, Okara, Pakpattan, Sahiwal, Muzaffargarh, Khanewal, Chakwal, Vehari, Nankana Sahib, and Khushab.

Rashid pointed out that the reason behind the decreasing trend is the strict implementation of SOPs.

“But this does not mean that we have defeated the virus,” she said. “The battle is ongoing and we have to keep figuring out ways to fight it.”

The best way is to wear masks and maintain social distancing. A study states that using a mask gives you 90% protection from the deadly virus.

Rashid urged people to get themselves and the elderly vaccinated. In Punjab, more than 2.8 million people have been vaccinated so far.

“It’s important to get people above the age of 50 immunised because they have a high chance of getting infected.”

The minister said that the smart lockdowns will be imposed in areas where the number of cases is high.

The minister said a vaccine camp has already been set up at the Lahore Press Club where journalists, who are frontline workers, are getting the vaccine doses.

She clarified that Astra-Zeneca vaccine first dose is being administered while Sinopharm vaccine second dose is being allocated to the citizens and people should make sure of their complete vaccination.

The minister said that lockdown during the last days of Ramazan clearly brought the coronavirus cases ratio down in the province and for the first time less than 1,000 Covid-19 cases were reported in Punjab.

Earlier this week, Punjab announced new SOPs to be followed from Monday including: a ban on commercial activities after 8pm; Saturdays and Sundays to be observed as closed days; Ban on indoor weddings; Outdoor weddings allowed with 150 guests from June 1; Outdoor dining allowed at restaurants till midnight from May 24; Shrines, gyms to stay closed; Tourism to reopen with SOPs from May 24; Trains to operate at 70% capacity and Public transport to operate at 50%.

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