Coronavirus kills 61 more Pakistanis, infects 2,351 in a day

By: News Desk      Published: 10:14 AM, 17 Mar, 2021
Coronavirus kills 61 more Pakistanis, infects 2,351 in a day
Senior citizens receive doses of the Chinese-made Sinopharm vaccine at a vaccination centre settled inside Expo Centre in Lahore.–AFP

Another 61 people lost their lives to coronavirus whereas 2,351 new infections were reported during the last 24 hours (Tuesday), showed the figures released by the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Wednesday morning.

As per the latest NCOC statistics, after the addition of the new 61 fatalities, the death toll has now surged to 13,656 while the number of total confirmed cases stood at 612,315, after adding 2,351 new ones.

During the past 24 hours (Tuesday), 2,853 patients have recovered from the Covid-19 while the total recoveries stood at 575,867. The total count of active cases across Pakistan was 22,792.

As many as 261,823 coronavirus cases have so far been confirmed in Sindh, 189,362 in Punjab, 76,819 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 48,938 in Islamabad, 19,247 in Balochistan, 11,161 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and 4,965 in Gilgit Baltistan.

As many as 5,853 individuals have lost their lives to the pandemic in Punjab so far, 4,468 in Sindh, 2,179 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 529 in Islamabad, 322 in Azad Kashmir, 202 in Balochistan and 103 in Gilgit Baltistan.

A total of 38,799 tests were conducted during the last 24 hours (Tuesday) while 9,603,865 samples have been tested so far.

Global developments

Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:

- EU regulator reassures on AstraZeneca -

The EU's medicines regulator says it is "firmly convinced" the benefits of AstraZeneca's jab outweigh potential risks, insisting there is no evidence linking the vaccine to blood clots after more than a dozen countries halt its rollout.

The leaders of France and Italy call the comments "encouraging" and say in a joint statement that they are ready to resume AstraZeneca jabs if EMA clears the vaccine. 

WHO safety experts also meet to discuss the vaccine.

- List keeps growing -

The Baltic state of Lithuania joins the list of countries suspending the AstraZeneca vaccine as a precaution, with Sweden, Luxembourg and Cyprus announcing the same.

- Thais, Canada crack on -

After becoming the first country outside of Europe to temporarily delay the AstraZeneca vaccine, Thailand lifts its suspension and premier Prayut Chan-O-Cha receives the first jab.

And in Canada, where leader Justin Trudeau has stood by the AstraZeneca jab, a scientific committee broadens its recommendation for the its use to include people aged 65 and over.

- France in 'third wave' -

France has entered a "form of third wave" of the coronavirus, Prime Minister Jean Castex says, as the government weighs whether to impose a new lockdown, notably in the capital region where hospitals are close to overflowing.

- New variant in France? -

French health authorities say they are investigating a new coronavirus variant found in the western Brittany region that is more difficult for tests to detect, though for now it does not appear to be more dangerous or contagious.

- 'Selfish' -

The Kremlin denounces "selfish attempts" to force countries to refuse certain coronavirus vaccines after a US government report says Washington had tried to persuade Brazil to reject Russia's Sputnik V jab.

- Origins report delay -

An international expert team that visited China to investigate the origins of Covid-19 has postponed publishing their report, which will now likely appear next week, the World Health Organization says.

- Iceland opens up -

Iceland is to allow entry to all visitors bearing proof of vaccination against Covid from Thursday, the health ministry says.

- Child trials -

US manufacturer Moderna says it has started vaccine trials for children aged from six months to under 12 years old, with plans to enrol about 6,750 participants.

- 900,000 dead in Europe -

The number of deaths from Covid-19 across Europe passed 900,000 on Tuesday, according to an AFP tally of official figures provided by health authorities.

At least 2,661,919 million people have died of coronavirus around the world since the outbreak began in December 2019.

The US is the worst-affected country with 535,661 deaths followed by Brazil (279,286), Mexico (194,944), India (158,856) and Britain (125,580).

With inputs from AFP.