Total corona cases top 429,000 in Pakistan, death toll 8,600
A boy cycles past policemen standing on guard in a cordoned-off street after authorities sealed a residential area as Covid-19 coronavirus cases continue to rise in Lahore.–AFP
As 3,138 people were diagnosed with the coronavirus during the past 24 hours (Wednesday), the overall number of cases in Pakistan increased to 429,280, showed the latest data released by National Command and Operation Centre on Thursday morning.
The infection rate in Sindh continued to be the highest in the country with another 2,003 people tested positive for the virus on Wednesday.
As far as the latest deaths are concerned, 23 coronavirus patients died in Punjab and 18 in Sindh followed 10 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, three in Islamabad and one each in Balochistan and Azad Kashmir.
With the addition of latest figures, the region-wise distribution of the coronavirus cases and deaths now stands at:
Sindh 189,687 cases and 3,099 deaths, Punjab 125,250 cases and 3,265 deaths, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 50,762 cases and 1,439 deaths, Islamabad 33,695 cases and 348 deaths, Balochistan 17,604 cases and 171 deaths, Azad Kashmir 7,517 cases and 183 deaths, Gilgit Baltistan 4,765 cases and 98 deaths.
Also on Wednesday, another 2,030 coronavirus patients fully recovered from the infection, raising the overall number to 374,301. It means the number of closed cases [deaths + patients recovering from infection] has increased to 382,904.
But the country still has 46,376 active cases out of which 2,575 are in a critical condition and being treated in intensive care units of different hospitals.
The ongoing testing process is part of the efforts to identify, isolate and trace new coronavirus cases to control the infection rate.
Latest global developments
Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:
- Mulled wine undoes Germans -
The German death toll reaches a daily record of nearly 600 with Chancellor Angela Merkel demanding tougher curbs. She says Christmas mulled wine and waffle stands break the social distancing requirements.
- South Africa in 'second wave' -
South Africa, the country most affected by the coronavirus on the continent, has entered a second wave of the pandemic, the health minister declares, as the country registers nearly 7,000 new cases in the last 24-hour cycle.
- Canada approves vaccine -
Canada approves the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, days after Britain became the first country to greenlight and roll it out.
- Cyberattack at EU medicines agency -
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) says it has been the victim of a cyberattack, just weeks before it is due to decide on special EU approval for two coronavirus vaccines.
- Israel takes vaccine delivery -
Israel receives its first batch of the vaccine with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declaring the pandemic's end is "in sight" and vowing to get the first jab.
- Over 1.55 million dead -
The novel coronavirus has killed at least 1,561,103 people since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1830 GMT Wednesday.
The US is the worst-affected country with 286,338 deaths, followed by Brazil with 178,159, India with 141,360, Mexico with 110,874 and the UK with 62,566.
- Covid-tested flight lands -
The first "Covid-tested" flight arrives in Rome from New York, an initiative designed to open up air routes between Europe and the United States blocked by the pandemic.
- Men come off worse -
Men infected with Covid-19 are three times more likely to require intensive care than women and are at significantly higher risk of dying from the virus, says a report published in Nature Communications.
- Cyprus shuts hospitality venues -
Cyprus closes hospitality venues and shopping malls and bans church attendance over the Christmas holidays, after rapid antigen tests show that "the virus is everywhere, in all cities, villages, districts".
- Russian cosmonauts offered jabs -
The Russian space agency says it plans to offer the Sputnik coronavirus vaccine to cosmonauts, but on a voluntary basis.
With inputs from AFP.