Islamabad’s positivity jumps past 3pc 71 persons test positive after 2,225 tests in twenty-four hours

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Zubair Qureshi

In the wake of the recent protests and overcrowding in the F-9 Park Mass Vaccination Centre by those workers and students who are waiting to be administered Covid-19 vaccines in order to travel to the Gulf or the European countries for work or studies, the coronavirus positivity in Islamabad has increased from below 1 per cent to above 3 per cent in the last seven days.

According to the district health department, people’s growing indifference to following the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for Covid-19 had also contributed to the return of Covid-19 cases in Islamabad where more than 2,225 tests were conducted during the past twenty-four hours.

After the tests, 71 persons were found infected with Covid-19 while the positivity rate remained 3.19 per cent in the capital.

The protesters had held that due to non-administration of Pfizer or Astrazeneca vaccines—both are acceptable in the Middle East and the European countries— their jobs as well as studies were at stake.

They are now being administered the Moderna vaccine Pakistan received from the US two days ago. This vaccine is also acceptable in the above-mentioned countries.

The Ministry of the National Health Services (NHS) has decided to pay the Covid-19 health risk allowance to the frontline health workers after passage of almost a year.

The ministry has reluctantly agreed to pay the overdue amount after the Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaisar sought a report from the Secretary Health about non-payment of Health Risk Allowance to the employees of government hospitals in the capital.

Last year, the health risk allowance was paid to a majority of healthcare workers but there were complaints that some of them were paid more compared to others.

During a session of the National Assembly on June 28, the speaker had pointed out that the healthcare workers had not been paid the Covid-19 health risk allowance for 11 months and sought an explanation from the Health Secretary in this regard.

After the speaker’s intervention, the ministry in a letter on Saturday said the hospitals have been directed to submit the lists of healthcare workers, by July 5, who performed Covid-19 duties.

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