LAHORE: Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid on Tuesday said that Pakistan is conducting the most coronavirus test among its South Asian neighbours.
Addressing a press conference, the minister revealed that Punjab’s fatality rate is 1.8 per cent. “Most of the deaths in Punjab happened due to patients with other previous illnesses getting coronavirus,” she said.
According to her, the Punjab government is trying its best to ramp up the testing capacity in the province to check for local transmission. Dr Yasmin further said that she will address the concerns and complaints of the academic council as well as anyone else’s.
Punjab accounts for almost half of Pakistan’s Covid-19. Out of 9,246 total cases, some 4,218 were reported in Punjab. Health officials have attributed the sky-rocketing toll to Punjab’s population which is the highest amongst its counterparts/administrative units.
Dr Yasmin disclosed said that many patients that are in quarantine in Punjab are asymptomatic — a condition in which the patient does not experience any symptoms of the disease.
She said that their goal is to keep the field hospitals running with the staff that they have already; however, more will be called in if need be.
The minister added that the biggest risk lied in bringing positive patients to major hospitals as there are chances of infecting others. “Therefore, we are taking all patients to field hospitals and are in the process of developing more.”
WILL ADDRESS QURESHI’S COMPLAINT:
Responding to complaint allegedly made by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi about the lack of facilities in Multan, Dr Yasmin said that Nishtar Hospital in Multan has been provided with personal protective equipment (PPE) kits for doctors and paramedical staff.
“We are ready to address all complaints and dispel the notion that we are not looking at Multan because we are in Lahore,” she said.
“At least 35 per cent of the provincial development budget has been allocated for Multan,” she said.
The minister added that she will visit Multan and update the foreign minister regarding the present status of medical facilities in the city.