Staff Reporter Islamabad/Lahore
The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Thursday voiced its concern over a rise in the country’s Covid-19 disease trend and mortalities, adding that almost all major cities have crossed 5 per cent positivity.
The country reported a total of 3,495 new coronavirus cases and 61 fatalities in the last 24 hours, translating into a national positivity rate of 7.8 per cent as it battles a third wave of the pandemic.
Punjab reported 1,824 cases, 43 deaths; Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: 624 cases, 9 deaths; Islamabad: 538cases, 2 deaths; Sindh: 384 cases, 1 death; Azad Jammu and Kashmir: 103 cases, 6 deaths and Balochistan: 22 cases.
The NCOC in its Thursday session, chaired by Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar, was informed about the implementation of various health guidelines that have been issued to all federating units.
“The NCOC was apprised that implementation on those guidelines needs comprehensive review.
The NCOC showed serious concern on rising disease trend and mortality,” a statement issued by the forum said.
“The NCOC was also briefed that a sharp rising trend in the disease is visible and positivity has crossed 7.5pc. Almost all major cities have crossed 5pc positivity,” it added.
Provincial administrations have been asked to take immediate actions for strict implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs) to curb the spread of the virus.
Serious concern was shown on the general disregard of SOPs by masses.
Mass violations of SOPs, including not wearing face masks and disregarding social distancing, are widely reported, the NCOC said.
The forum appealed to citizens to display “good social behaviour”, warning that a failure to do so will result in strict measures which may cause closure of businesses and restrictions on economic and social activities.
The planning and development minister also took to Twitter to urge citizens to practice caution in light of a third wave of the pandemic.
“Sharp spike in Covid positivity. Daily hospital admissions and people in critical care rising fast.
If SOP compliance does not improve, we will be forced to place stronger restrictions on activities.
Please be very, very careful. The new strain spreads
faster and is more deadly,” he said.