Pakistan reported the current year’s highest number of deaths from Covid-19 in a single day as the total casualty figure surpassed 13,000.
According to the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), 75 patients succumbed to the virus in a single day — the highest after 78 deaths were reported on Dec 21, 2020.
The number of hospitalised patients, however, has dropped to the level of November last year as less than 2,000 people are under treatment in the country. Besides, the number of active cases, which was over 50,000 in December, has also fallen to 16,648 as of March 3.
In another development, a team of Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (Pims) has suggested that the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif should not return to Lahore as travelling would exacerbate his health-related issues and recommended him complete bed rest for one week.
According to an NCOC document, available with Dawn, the death figure of over 75 has been reported only two times since July 6, 2020 and that was in December.
The maximum number of patients admitted to hospitals had surpassed 7,000 on June 15 last year but then it started to decrease and fell to less than 1,000 in October. The count rose again and reached 3,000 in December. However, in February, cases fell, and during the last two days, they have remained below 2,000.
The document further showed that the positivity ratio, which is measured on the basis of positive cases in every 100 samples, was recorded at over 11 per cent by the end of March last year. It surged over 22pc on May 25 but then started to drop, coming down to 1.7pc in September.
In October, the ratio witnessed an upward trend, reaching 7.9pc on Dec 7. In the next few months, the rate started coming down and fell to 3.3pc by Feb 22. However, on March 3 it was recorded at 4.21pc.
The NCOC data also revealed that 1,388 people contracted the virus in a single day while 1,995 patients were admitted to hospitals across the country. A total of 583,916 cases and 13,013 deaths have been reported till date.
Bed rest for Shehbaz Sharif
A Pims medical team has suggested that PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif should not be sent back to Lahore as travelling would complicate his health. It recommended a week’s bed rest for him.
The team, comprising Pims Deputy Executive Director Dr Zulfiqar Ghouri, Head of Cardiology Department Prof Mohammad Naeem Malik and Head of Neurosurgery Department Prof Sajid Nazeer Bhatti, thoroughly examined Mian Shehbaz Sharif.
The report, available with Dawn, states, “70 years old man complaining of light headedness and fatigue. No hypertension, DM [diabetes mellitus]and IHD [ischemic heart disease]in the past.”
The report further revealed that the patient looked a little anemic and in pain, blood pressure was 150/90 and, as per examination of the neurosurgeon, was a known case of spondylosis and due to travelling had spasm of muscles of lower back, giving rise to severe pain. Further travelling will make things worse, it stated.
While prescribing medicines, the team has recommended complete bed rest for at least seven days with immediate effect.
It is worth mentioning that the opposition leader, who is in National Accountability Bureau’s custody, was brought to Islamabad to cast his vote in the Senate elections. He has been residing in a house located in the Ministers’ Enclave which has been declared a sub-jail.