Restrictions bearing fruit as Lahore positivity rate inches down: minister

LAHORE: Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid said on Monday that smart lockdowns and targeted restrictions were bearing fruit, with the coronavirus transmission rate in Lahore was registering a decrease.

“The [complete] impact of the measures will become evident in the next two to three days,” she said during a television programme.

Improvement has already been noticed in the positivity rate, as it has inched down in Lahore, she said.

The minister hoped people will continue to follow health guidelines even as the infection rate declines.

She endorsed Prime Minister Imran Khan’s position on lockdown as well. “He [Imran] is right in that if we impose another [blanket] lockdown, our economy will suffer and people will be in even more losses,” said the minister.

She added that if people wear face masks, wash hands and adopt precautionary measures, the country can both run the economy and battle the pandemic at the same time.

The minister also spoke about the load on hospitals, telling the hosts of the show that capacity was at 30 per cent to 40 per cent in Lahore hospitals.

She urged the people to contact Rescue 1122 if they want to admit a patient, as the service has up-to-date data on the coronavirus-related situation in hospitals.

Meanwhile, the coronavirus positivity rate in Punjab stood at 12.6 per cent, with the province testing 17,994 samples, of which 2,275 returned positive.

In Lahore, the authorities administered 6,511 tests, of which 1,362 came back positive, putting the positivity ratio at 20.92 per cent.

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