Coronavirus restrictions | By Attiya Munawer


Coronavirus restrictions

THE rapid spread of the third and most dangerous wave of coronavirus, the steady increase in the number of patients and the trend of citizens not following the precautionary measures (SOPs), the government has announced more stringent measures in the interest of the people to control this global pandemic.

Possible steps are being taken by the government in this regard with the re-imposition of sanctions and for the first time cases of violation of SOPs are being registered.

The third wave of coronavirus is being described as more dangerous and is spreading rapidly, affecting a large number of children as well as adults.

Earlier, children were considered safe from coronavirus, so not much attention has been paid to the development of vaccine for them, but now vaccine for children is in the process of preparation.

Vaccine doses are not available in Pakistan according to the number of adults. The government will have to ensure the supply of vaccines as well as preparations.

When the Coronavirus catastrophe came to light last year, many countries were completely shut down, curfew-like sanctions were imposed, and we also had similar lockdown demands, which the Prime Minister continued to oppose.

It was stated that the complete lockdown would force many people to go on hunger strike.

The government was content with a partial lockdown and in the meanwhile a large amount of money was allocated for the welfare of the unemployed and distributed to the deserving people.

Federal and Provincial Governments have made every effort to implement the SOPs issued by the NCOC.

Many countries appreciated Pakistan’s initiatives and have achieved remarkable results by partially locking down in the same manner.

But it is not requisite that only the steps taken in the past be effective in overcoming this third wave of Coronavirus, a new strategy will have to be devised using the previous steps.

The Pakistan Medical Association has termed the government’s measures and strategy to control coronavirus as inadequate and ineffective.

The PMA meeting in Lahore demanded the government to ensure complete lockdown and implementation of Corona SOPs in major cities including Lahore.

The government is strictly following SOPs, but is pursuing a policy of avoiding lockdown.

Even though the President and the Prime Minister have been affected by the third wave of Coronavirus, the Prime Minister says that we do not have the resources to close the country but when it comes to the survival of human lives then such tough decisions have to be made.

Both the government and the people seem to be in a state of turmoil. Lockdowns are being announced in areas with a positive case rate of more than 12%.

The growing number of corona patients in large cities like Lahore where already life-saving equipment and facilities are running out- delays in making quick and drastic decisions by the government could mean a major medical crisis.

Only a strict lockdown for a few weeks with strict implementation of Coronavirus SOPs can stop the pandemic.

The government, concerned agencies and the general public should play their role responsibly for the prevention of coronavirus pandemic because a single failure in the prevention of Corona can be a prelude to great loss.

—The writer is a regular columnist, based in Lahore.

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