KARACHI: Sindh Health Minister Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho on Thursday said that people in the province are still hesitant to get themselves inoculated against the novel coronavirus.
The health minister, addressing a press conference in Karachi, said Sindh would ease restriction once people start getting themselves inoculated. She added that the ratio of coronavirus positive cases in Karachi still above 11%.
Dr Pechuho said all members of the national and provincial assemblies have been inoculated for the coronavirus vaccine.
“Hospitals are still receiving coronavirus positive patients.”
She added that Sindh has mandated all provincial government employees to get inoculated against the virus.
Speaking about the COVID-19 restrictions which are in place across Sindh at the moment, Dr Pechuho said restrictions would only be eased when people will start getting themselves vaccinated.
“People aged 30 and above can now go to walk-in vaccination centres, while people aged 19 to 29 can now get themselves registered for the vaccine.”
Shedding light on the arrangement that Sindh is making to inoculate people, Dr Pechuho said that the government has started negotiating with industrialists.
“We are also planning to vaccinate people at home, while a mobile vaccination service will also be launched soon,” the health minister said, adding that the government has set a target of inoculating more than 18 million people within three months.
Dr Pechuho said that 17.26 million of Sindh’s population comprises people aged 30 and below, while 1.5 million people have so far been vaccinated.
Dr Pechuho also spoke about the rumours surrounding the coronavirus vaccine.
“The man who spread rumours about people dying within two years of vaccination was foolish,” Dr Pechuho said. “If anyone witnesses side effects of the vaccine, then there are medicines to cure that.”
The health minister said that Sindh has asked the Centre to ensure an uninterrupted supply of vaccines to the province.
Taking a jibe at those who have criticised the government’s decision to impose coronavirus restrictions in the province, Dr Pechuho said it is wrong to say that the move is equivalent to “economic murder.”
“Shops are open, while people are regularly shopping online,” she said. “We didn’t have to impose a curfew in the province.”
The minister also said that COVID-19 did not spread in Sindh like it did in some other countries.
Pakistan’s coronavirus death toll crosses the 21,000 mark
On Thursday, Pakistan’s coronavirus death tally surpassed the 21,000-mark after 92 fatalities were reported, pushing the total death tally to 21,022, according to the official data provided by the National and Command and Operation Centre (NCOC).
About 51,523 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours out of which 2,028 returned positive, taking the total caseload to 926,695 on Thursday.
The positivity rate of coronavirus stands at 3.93% making it the 10th consecutive day when the country reported less than 5% positivity rate.
Out of the total confirmed cases, Sindh has reported 320,488, Punjab 340,989, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 133,450, Islamabad 81,446, Balochistan 25,370, Azad Jammu and Kashmir 19,344, and Gilgit Baltistan 5,608.
The country is reporting a decline in coronavirus cases amid the deadly third wave that has wreaked havoc.
Pakistan has started coronavirus vaccination for those who are over 18 years old from today.
A digital portal has been launched by the federal government for the registration through which a code is assigned to the person. They can then go to a designated vaccination centre and get a jab.