Coronavirus reinfection in vaccinated individuals in Punjab

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Data shows that 10 per cent of the 140 Covid-19 patients in Punjab are reinfected with the virus despite being vaccinated.

Most of the reinfected vaccinated people are front-line healthcare workers of the general public sector hospitals of the province.

The worrisome data was shared at a gathering of the Corona Experts Advisory Group (CEAG) on Thursday.

The meeting was attended by CEAG Chairman Prof Mahmood Shaukat, King Edward Medical College Dean Prof Saqib Saeed, Punjab Healthcare Commission Director Dr Mushtaq Sulehrya, additional secretaries (technical) from both health departments, senior epidemiologist Shahid Sethi and other doctors .

The health officials shared a study report on the Covid patients under treatment at various public sector hospitals of the province.

According to the report, the health department sampled 140 Covid-19 positive patients for analysis from various government hospitals to see reinfection cases.

The analysis showed that 10pc of them were reinfected despite getting two doses of the vaccine while the opposite positive patients were ‘unvaccinated’.

An official said the meeting also discussed the case of a former vice-chancellor of the King Edward Medical University who retested positive for the virus despite being vaccinated.

Following the report, the CEAG chairman proposed a booster of the Covid-19 vaccine for the vaccinated healthcare workers of the hospitals due to their exposure to the infection.

The official said some participants presented conflicting reports on the booster .

He said an expert told the meeting that the planet Health Organization has not recommended thus far the booster for the vaccinated people while theother was of the view that some international studies have supported this practice.

On this, Prof Shaukat said the booster would help increase anti-bodies to avoid the danger of re-infection or complications after the onset of the disease.

He said that it had been a far better option for CEAG to recommend the booster for the healthcare workers three to 6 months after being vaccinated.

The meeting also analyzed national and international data on the Covid patients reported during the fourth wave of the virus.

After an in depth deliberation on the study reports, the CEAG has recommended Moderna or Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine as a booster for the already vaccinated doctors .

The recommendations are going to be sent to the National Command Operation Centre for approval, the meeting decided unanimously.

Meanwhile, the CEAG meeting also expressed its serious concern that 734 patients of the Punjab Institute of psychological state Sciences weren’t vaccinated yet due to the non-availability of their national identity cards.

The body recommended to the health authorities to vaccinate the patients of the PIMM while obtaining their fingerprints or photographs as an alternate choice to the CNIC.

A mobile van of Nadra should be dispatched to the institute to issue them new CNIC, the CEAG further recommended.

NEW CASES:

The daily number of latest Covid infections crossed 1,000 figure for the primary time since the 4th wave hit Punjab.

According to the Covid update released here on Thursday, 1,173 people tested positive for the virus in Punjab during the last 24 hours, bringing the entire number to 360,494.

Similarly, the entire number of deaths reached 11,120 after 18 more patients died of the virus during an equivalent period.

The official data shows that health teams have expedited the method of vaccination as 594,531 people, including 16,975 healthcare workers and 768 foreigners, got jabs during the last 24 hours in Punjab.

Of the 36 districts, only Chiniot and Jhelum have vaccinated 50 per cent of the population, respectively, the figures said.

It further showed that the Punjab government features a stock of 1.5 million doses of six sorts of vaccines — Pfizer 2,251, Sinopharm 283,002, Sinovac 430,366, Sinopak 57,214, AstraZenca 223,173 and Cansino 43,784.

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