Corona cases in country soar to 4,497

ISLAMABAD: The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Pakistan rose to 4,497 on Thursday after new infections were confirmed in the country.

These include 2,224 cases in Punjab, 1,128 in Sindh, 560 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 219 in Balochistan, 215 in Gilgit-Baltistan, 188 in Islamabad Capital Territory and 33 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

According to National Command and Operation Centre on Thursday at 8:10 AM, 248 new coronavirus cases were detected in last 24 hours. Sixty-five people have died of coronavirus since its outbreak in Pakistan, which include 21 in Sindh, Punjab 17, KP 20, Balochistan 2, ICT 1 and three in Gilgit-Baltistan. However, 572 people have been recovered while 1,403 COVID patients were hospitalised and 31 of them are in critical condition.

The government has also enhanced testing facilities and a total of 44,896 tests have so far been conducted. Isolation facilities have been established in 462 hospitals across Pakistan with a capacity of 7, 295 beds. Besides 17,448 corona affected people have been housed at 332 quarantine facilities.

Meanwhile, Sindh Coronavirus Emergency Relief Ordinance on Thursday has been finalised with an aim to provide relief to the people amid deadly virus outbreak. The draft of the ordinance prepared by Sindh Law Ministry will be sent to Governor Imran Ismail for the approval. The ordinancehas been drafted according to the Article 128 of Constitution of Pakistan. The ordinance would be enforced from April 1 in the province after the approval.

All private schools have been bound to give 20 per cent concession in fee amid coronaivurs. Schools have been bound not to charge more than 80 per cent of the fees from the parents. The schools cannot charge 20 per cent fees in any other form neither can charge in installments the draft reads. The punishment for the violators has also been fixed in the ordinance.

Meanwhile, Ajmal Khan Wazir, an adviser to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan told the recipients of the Ehsaas cash programme to only leave their houses to collect the money after they receive an SMS from 8171.

The SMS will even tell the people where to come and at what time. Once you reach the office the people will then be told where to stand because they want to maintain social distancing, too, he said at a press conference on Thursday.

The Ehsaas programme which is being run by the federal government will give Rs12 000 to deserving families who don t have any source of income because of the lockdown imposed to curb the spread of COVID 19.

Ajmal Wazir added that the KP CM has announced a Zakat programme under which 100 000 families will be given Rs12,000. The funds of the KP package will be released in the second phase he said.

The emergency contact number for anyone who wants help or know more about the coronavirus is 091111712713, the WhatsApp number is 03473666849 and the telephone number is 0919222561-3. “We have to work together and defeat coronavirus,” he added.

Meanwhile at the behest of the Punjab Government the Department of Telemedicine which is active in the Lahore General Hospital has secured prominence which is playing a vital role in providing guidance to the citizens regarding the Corona Virus. To provide timely medical advice LGH has doubled the number of telephone lines on the Corona Helpline and has now issued 4 telephone numbers available which are 042 99268808 042 99268809 042 99268819 042 99268837 in this regard. Where the staff will be available 24 hours to guide the citizens and they will answer their questions with medical advice those who will be saved from the inconvenience of coming to the hospital.

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