Coronavirus infections, fatalities inch up in Pakistan

NIH data shows another 313 cases and four new deaths with infectivity rate climbing up to 1.92%: North Korea reports four new 'fever' cases

By: News Desk
Published: 10:32 AM, 25 Aug, 2022
Coronavirus infections, fatalities inch up in Pakistan
Caption: New school term starts at an elementary school in Osaka City, Osaka Prefecture in Japan. All students and teachers wear facemasks amid a pandemic of Covid-19.–AFP
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The number of everyday coronavirus infections and fatalities inched up in Pakistan as the country reported 313 cases and four deaths during the last 24 hours (Wednesday), showed the statistics released by the National Institute of Health Pakistan on Thursday morning, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

As per the NIH data, the death toll in the country now surged to 30,563 after adding the four new deaths while the number of total infections now stood at 1,567,460 after adding the fresh 313 cases.

During the last 24 hours (Wednesday), 16,339 tests were conducted throughout Pakistan whereas the positivity ratio stood at 1.92 percent. The number of patients in critical care was recorded at 134.

North Korea reports four new 'fever' cases

North Korea's state media reported four new fever cases Thursday, saying they were suspected of being infected with the "malignant epidemic" -- just two weeks after the country declared victory over Covid-19.

The isolated nation, which has maintained a rigid blockade since the start of the pandemic, confirmed an Omicron outbreak in the capital Pyongyang in May.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un -- who also fell ill during the outbreak -- declared victory over the virus earlier this month and ordered the lifting of the country's "maximum emergency epidemic prevention system" as officially reported cases fell to zero.

But four new fever cases were recorded in Ryanggang province -- which borders China -- on August 23, the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said, citing data from the state emergency epidemic prevention headquarters.

Authorities "immediately locked down the area where fever cases occurred and at the same time urgently mobilized rapid mobile anti-epidemic teams and rapid diagnosis and treatment team," KCNA said.

They are also "taking measures to probe into the cause of the fever outbreak," it said.

North Korea refers to "fever patients" rather than "Covid patients" in case reports, apparently due to a lack of testing capacity.

It has recorded nearly 4.8 million "fever" infections and just 74 deaths for an official fatality rate of 0.002 percent, according to state media. It has reported no new cases since July 29, until now.

Experts, including the World Health Organization, have long questioned Pyongyang's Covid statistics and claims to have brought the outbreak under control.

North Korea has one of the world's worst healthcare systems, with poorly equipped hospitals, few intensive care units and no Covid treatment drugs, experts say.

It is not believed to have vaccinated any of its 25 million residents, although it may have received some vaccines from China, Seoul-based specialist site NK News has reported.

Pyongyang has blamed the outbreak on the South Korea and warned of "retaliation".

With inputs from AFP.