KARACHI: The emergency section of Abbasi Shaheed Hospital was sealed on Sunday after a senior doctor was diagnosed with coronovairus.
A senior official from a medical facility managed by the Karachi Metropolitan Company said Dawn that the chief medical officer (CMO) emergency tested positive for Covid-19 on Sunday.
Around 3 pm, the hospital emergency was sealed, said an additional surgeon from the hospital Dr. Saleem Shaikh.
383 new cases in Sindh
Calling “some extraordinary measures” to slow the spread of coronavirus in the province, Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on Sunday warned that the situation was changing from worse to worse when 383 new cases of Covid-19 emerged overnight, including 301 in the city.
In his video message, he said that the number of cases detected during the previous 24 hours was the highest in the last 61 days of the Covid-19 emergency starting February 26.
Murad said 301 new cases of coronavirus appeared in Karachi alone in one day
He revealed that 3,028 tests were conducted on 383 detected cases, which constituted 12 percent of the tests.
“This shows the situation is changing from bad to worse and we must take some extraordinary action,” he said.
He said that 41 patients were in critical condition and 12 of them were using ventilators.
He said 70 patients had recovered and returned to their homes. “Our 872 patients, or 18.9 pc, have recovered so far,” he said.
Mr Shah said that so far 41,216 tests were carried out on 4,615 cases, or 11.2pc, diagnosed positively.
He also said that three more patients died due to coronavirus infection. raised the death rate to 81, or 1.8 pc of total patients.
Providing details about cases in Karachi, he said Central has 594 cases with 99 new cases, Timur has 676 cases including 66 new cases, Korangi has 318 cases with 26 new cases, Malir has 272 cases with 10 new cases, South has 895 cases with 80 new cases and the West has 322 cases with 20 new cases.
He said there were 4,615 cases in the province and 3,077 of them were in Karachi alone.
“This is a serious situation,” he said, adding he had to build more hospitals / isolation centers to meet the increasing number of corona virus patients.
Mr Shah said that two more flights from Malaysia and Dubai landed in Karachi bringing back 505 stranded Pakistanis, all of whom were quarantined.
He said that the health department had begun collecting their samples to test it and on Monday the results would come out.
Planning to increase hospital capacity
In another meeting with the health department, the chief minister said that the number of new patients is increasing day by day.
Provincial ministers, chief secretaries, Karachi commissioners and deputy commissioners were present at the meeting.
“The government must increase the capacity of central isolation beds by increasing the capacity of existing field hospitals and building new centers,” he added.
Mr Shah directed Commissioner Iftikhar Shallwani to prepare a plan to increase the capacity of the Expo Center Field Hospital from 1,200 to 1,500 beds.
He also issued a directive to establish an isolation center at the PAF Museum Convention Center, Dalmia Ground, Darul Ehsas Manghopir and other areas.
The chief minister is tasked with exploring vacant buildings and land in the planning and development department to establish isolation centers and field hospitals.
He said that the target to establish 10,000-bed facilities must be achieved.
The CM also directs the chief secretary to continuously review equipment requirements and the requirements of doctors and paramedical staff for the proposed facilities.
Meanwhile, CM also chaired division meetings and district officials, in addition to Karachi, where he reviewed sampling methods, the availability of test kits and directed them to begin extensive testing.
The chief minister said that 17 cases were detected in Sukkur, seven in Hyderabad, two each in Khairpur, Thatta, Badin, Matiari, Mirpurkhas and, respectively in Dadu, Jamshro, Mirpurkhas, and Larkana.
Mr Shah directed Health Minister Dr. Azra Pechuho to send a team of specialized lab experts to visit each and every district to guide them in collecting samples.
The chief minister directs all deputy commissioners to improve their health facilities, encouraging people to adopt social distance in their respective regions.
Published in Dawn, April 27, 2020
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