Pakistan posts over 100 more coronavirus cases, one fatality

NIH data shows positivity ration further sliding to 0.62%: WHO says end to Covid pandemic in sight

By: News Desk
Published: 10:33 AM, 15 Sep, 2022
Pakistan coronavirus
Caption: Representational image.
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A day after World Health Organisation’s statement that an end to the Covid-19 pandemic in sight, Pakistan has reported another 117 coronavirus infections and one fatality during the last 24 hours (Wednesday), showed the statistics released by the National Institute of Health (NIH) on Thursday morning, reported 24NewsHD TV channel. 

According to NIH data, the death toll in the country has risen to 30,604 while the number of total infections now stood at 1,571,530 after adding the fresh 117 cases.

During the last 24 hours (Wednesday), 18,785 tests were conducted throughout Pakistan whereas the positivity ratio stood at 0.62 percent. The number of patients in critical care was recorded at 82.

During the last 24 hours (Wednesday), another 279 patients have recovered from the Covid-19 in Pakistan and the number of total recoveries now stood at 1,535,388. As of Thursday, the total count of active cases in the country was recorded at 5,538.

As many as 593,867 coronavirus cases have so far been confirmed in Sindh, 521,917 in Punjab, 224,053 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 139,358 in Islamabad, 35,980 in Balochistan, 44,309 in Azad Kashmir and 12,046 in Gilgit-Baltistan.

As many as 13,611 individuals have lost their lives to the pandemic in Punjab so far, 8,238 in Sindh, 6,362 in KP, 1,031 in Islamabad, 793 in Azad Kashmir, 378 in Balochistan and 191 in Gilgit Baltistan.


End of Covid pandemic in sight: WHO

The number of newly reported Covid-19 cases has dropped dramatically, the World Health Organization said Wednesday, urging the world to seize the opportunity to end the pandemic.

Newly reported cases of the disease, which has killed millions since being identified in late 2019, last week fell to the lowest level since March 2020, said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

"We have never been in a better position to end the pandemic," he told reporters. "We are not there yet, but the end is in sight."

But the world needed to step up to "seize this opportunity", he added.

"If we don't take this opportunity now, we run the risk of more variants, more deaths, more disruption, and more uncertainty."

According to WHO's latest epidemiological report on Covid-19, the number of reported cases fell 28 percent to 3.1 million during the week ending September 11, following a 12-percent-drop a week earlier.

- 'Underestimate' -

But the agency has warned that the falling number of reported cases is deceptive, since many countries have cut back on testing and may not be detecting the less serious cases.

"The number of cases that are being reported to WHO we know are an underestimate," Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO technical lead on Covid, told reporters.

"We feel that far more cases are actually circulating than are being reported to us," she said, cautioning that the virus "is circulating at a very intense level around the world at the present time".

Since the start of the pandemic, WHO has tallied more than 605 million cases, and some 6.4 million deaths, although both those numbers are also believed to be serious undercounts.

A WHO study published in May based on excess mortality seen in various countries during the pandemic estimated that up to 17 million people may have died from Covid in 2020 and 2021.

Van Kerkhove noted that going forward there will likely be "future waves of infection, potentially at different time points throughout the world, caused by different sub-variants of Omicron or even different variants of concern".

But, she added, "those future waves of infection do not need to translate into future waves of death".

Xinjiang residents complain of hunger after 40-day COVID lockdown

Residents of a city in China’s far western Xinjiang region say they have run out of food after more than 40 days under a strict coronavirus lockdown.

In posts shared on Chinese social media, as well as platforms including TikTok and Twitter, residents of Ghulja showed empty fridges and hungry children. Others were in tears recounting their experience during the lockdown, which began in early August.

China remains committed to a policy of ‘zero COVID’, confining whole communities to their homes for extended periods — with food supplies delivered — and requiring them to undergo regular testing.

The lockdown in Ghulja has also prompted accusations that the mostly Muslim Uighurs, the Turkic ethnic group native to Xinjiang, are being targeted.

China has been accused of running a network of detention centres and prisons in the region and holding some one million Uighurs and other largely Muslim minorities in a system that the United Nations has said may constitute “crimes against humanity“. Beijing has argued the camps are vocational skills training centres necessary to address “extremism”.

An earlier lockdown in Xinjiang was particularly tough, with forced medication, arrests and residents being hosed down with disinfectant.

With inputs from AFP.