KARACHI: A coronavirus variant first discovered in the United Kingdom now accounts for up to 70 per cent of Covid-19 infections across Pakistan, a research centre studying the disease in the country said on Saturday. “There is a 60pc to 70pc prevalence of the UK variant in Pakistan,” Professor Dr Muhammad Iqbal Chaudhry, director at the International Centre for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), University of Karachi, told Reuters, adding that this figure was 2pc in January. The “UK variant”, known as B.1.1.7 and first identified in Britain late last year, is believed to be more transmissible than other previously dominant coronavirus variants. Pakistan has seen a daily death toll of more than 100 in recent weeks. Officials are worried the strained healthcare system could reach a breaking point if more contagious coronavirus variants begin to spread, as has happened in India.
May 08, 2021 16:30 UTC
KARACHI: The Sindh government has established Pakistan’s first mass vaccination centre in Karachi to administer vaccination round the clock. The coronavirus mass vaccination centre has been established at the Expo Centre, where the isolation centre and treatment facility is also being revived to treat the patients of coronavirus. Law and Environment Adviser Barrister Murtaza Wahab informed the new mass vaccination centre would be able to vaccinate 20,000 to 25,000 people in a day, and that it would start working from Sunday (today) to provide free inoculation services. He further said the centre would be highly beneficial and protect the health of the citizens against the deadly viral disease. He recalled that just one and half months back, the prevalence of the coronavirus infection in Sindh was just two per cent that has now been increased to 7.1 per cent.
May 08, 2021 16:18 UTC
The provincial minister said that the rights of the villagers would be fully protected and no one would be allowed to usurp their rights, adding that legal rights of everyone would be protected. Earlier, Nasir, accompanied by MNA Jam Abdul Karim Jokhio, MPA Saleem Baloch and MPA Sajid Jokhio, reached Gadap Town and met with the villagers to find out the details of the incident. Nasir along with Jam and Saleem also visited Jinnah Hospital and enquired about the health of the injured in the Gadap incident. Resultantly, one villager, Shaukat Khaskheli, had sustained a bullet injury, while another had suffered minor injuries. The guards had allegedly taken away the injured villager and three or four other locals with them.
May 08, 2021 14:48 UTC
We realize that the mobility restrictions put into place from today till the 16th are going to cause inconvenience. “Even a small country like Nepal saw an exponential rise in cases going up above 7,000 daily. You can see the entire region is exploding with cases & deaths, in the latest covid wave,” he observed. The country is currently in the middle of a third peak which authorities say is worse than the previous ones. Since last year, it has reported 18,797 deaths from Covid-19 among 854,240 cases.
May 08, 2021 12:09 UTC
MADRID: Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos may have played his last game for the club after they announced on Saturday that he had picked up a hamstring injury. Ramos’s contract runs out at the end of June and there are only four La Liga games remaining this season. “Following the tests carried out on Sergio Ramos by the Real Madrid Medical Services, he has been diagnosed with tendonitis in the muscle of his left hamstring. Real, who sit second in La Liga on 74 points, take on fourth-placed Sevilla — Ramos’s former club — on Sunday. Injuries have plagued the 35-year-old this season, limiting him to 15 league starts and only five appearances in all competitions in 2021.
May 08, 2021 11:37 UTC
ISLAMABAD: A soldier was injured in an ambush by militants from Afghanistan along the border between the two countries late on Friday night, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said. The military’s media wing said that terrorists from the Afghan side of the border opened fire on a military checkpoint in the Bajaur district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In the statement, the ISPR said Pakistan has “consistently been requesting Afghanistan to ensure effective border management”. “Pakistan strongly condemns the use of Afghan soil by terrorists for activities against Pakistan,” it said. The soldiers were working on fencing along the border in the district, the ISPR said in a statement on Wednesday.
May 08, 2021 09:56 UTC
TOKYO: Japan said on Friday that it will tighten restrictions on its nationals and residents arriving here from Pakistan, India, and Nepal amid concerns over highly transmissible virus variants wreaking havoc, particularly in India. PCR tests will be conducted on the passengers on day three and six, according to the government’s newly-announced guidelines. For around 35 countries and regions where virus variants have been reported, which include India and Pakistan, Japan currently requires Japanese nationals and residents arriving here to self-isolate in designated facilities for just three days and be tested for the virus on day three. Prior to this, negative PCR test results are required to be submitted within 72 hours prior to their departure and another test is administered upon their arrival here. Non-resident foreigners, such as tourists, are still banned from entering Japan unless they have qualified for a visa stipulating their visit falls into the category of “special exceptional circumstances.”
May 08, 2021 08:48 UTC
“While the situation in India is beyond prevention, Pakistan still has time to prepare and take measures to avoid the tragedy at its doorstep,” cautioned Dr. Faheem Younus, Chief of Infectious Diseases at the University of Maryland. Dr. Younus’s juxtaposition of Pakistan and India suggests that the arch-rivals face a similar struggle against the contagious respiratory disease. For Pakistan, Dr. Younus said, the writing is on the wall. These factors coupled with more than 200 million people who are vulnerable, in epidemiological terms, Dr. Younus said, make the nation a sitting duck in a data fog. Dr. Younus said the government can address the hyper reaction through mass communication.
Source:The Express Tribune
May 08, 2021 04:41 UTC
KARACHI: Sanofi Pakistan on Friday announced that a series of webinars was held to discuss and debate about the needs of patients of genetic disorders. Special Assistant to PM on Health Dr Faisal Sultan, Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid, Professor Dr Huma A Cheema, and Lysosomal Storage Disorders Society President Atif Ejaz Qureshi participated in the webinars. He proposed creation of an endowment fund and public-private partnerships as effective avenues to ensure provision and accessibility of costly treatments for rare genetic disorders. Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin revealed that Punjab is working on genetic disorders and taking a number of initiatives, including legislation. In her concluding remarks, Dr Yasmin asked the organisers to propose a consortium of partners on genetic disorders that will drive the cause.
May 07, 2021 18:45 UTC
Karachi-based Getz Pharma is willing to invest up to $100 million to set up a vaccine manufacturing facility in Pakistan, reported an international media outlet on Thursday, as governments and organisations around the world push for increased production of Covid-19 vaccines in developing countries. According to the report, Getz Pharma CEO Khalid Mahmood expressed willingness to invest millions of dollars to set up the plant that would be capable of making mRNA vaccines to overcome the vaccine shortage. mRNA vaccines are a new type of vaccine to protect against infectious diseases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The benefit of mRNA vaccines, like all vaccines, is that those vaccinated gain protection without ever having to risk the serious consequences of getting sick with COVID-19. Presently, the top Covid-19 vaccines such as those from Pfizer and Moderna use mRNA technology, whereas Chinese Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines are whole virus vaccines.
May 07, 2021 17:37 UTC
“That’s the bare minimum we need for a country this size,” said Tarin, who is due to present a new budget next month for the world’s fifth most-populous nation. “There are almost 110 million youth.”Tarin, a former banker, was appointed last month as the fourth finance minister since Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government took power in 2018. Tarin said that he expects the deficit in the next fiscal to be 1 or 1.5 percentage points lower. The Washington-based lender sees the economy expanding 1.5 per cent in the current fiscal period after a rare contraction last year. “Unless we get more revenues, forget about any incentives to boost the economy.”
May 07, 2021 16:52 UTC
According to details, the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Pakistan Regional Economic Integration Activity (PREIA) provided technical and financial support for the pilot project. This week’s pilot shipment was the first in a series of five planned trial runs between Pakistan and Central Asia. USAID Mission Director Julie Koenen said that the success of the first pilot shipment to Tashkent will build confidence among traders and transport operators on both sides to use TIR for cross-border trade and transit, which will boost regional trade. The TIR Convention was signed in 1975 under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. Pakistan acceded to the TIR Convention on July 24, 2015 and was declared as a “TIR operational country” by the IRU on April 19, 2018.
May 07, 2021 16:30 UTC
GENEVA: The World Health Organisation approved a Covid-19 vaccine from China’s state-owned drugmaker Sinopharm for emergency use on Friday, a boost to Beijing’s push for a big role in inoculating the world. It is also the first time the WHO has given emergency use approval to a Chinese vaccine for any infectious disease. The WHO had already given emergency approval to Covid-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and, last week, Moderna. Tedros said that, following the approval, SAGE had recommended that adults over 18 receive two doses of the Sinopharm vaccine. China has deployed around 65 million doses of the Sinopharm vaccine and more than 200 million doses of the Sinovac shot.
May 07, 2021 15:45 UTC
Private guards alleged shot a resident of Karachi’s Gadap Town during Bahria Town Karachi’s (BTK) move to raze down several agricultural lands to pave the way for housing projects in the outskirts of the city. Moreover, it had been reported that, along with the guards, the firing had been carried out by policemen in civvies as well. The guards allegedly took away the injured villager and 3-4 other locals with them, Hafeez said. Villagers were protesting against the BTK personnel and demanding that the injured person be handed over to them and that a first information report (FIR) be lodged against the BTK guards. Hafeez said BTK officials had stopped their eviction efforts after Bilawal took notice of them, but they had resumed the same today after a gap of a week.
May 07, 2021 15:00 UTC
Veteran actor Sumbul Shahid passed away on Thursday after a prolonged battle with Covid-19. Sumbul Apa was a bundle of light and energy and lit up every space she was in. He tweeted, “Finding myself at a loss of words after hearing about Sumbul Shahid. Allah give us all strength to deal with this magnanimous loss.”Finding myself at a loss of words after hearing about Sumbul Shahid. Sumbul Shahid ji has passed away.
Source:The Express Tribune
May 07, 2021 09:19 UTC