Sindh health minister suggests ban on public gatherings to curb coronavirus spread
Statesman Report
KARACHI: Sindh’s Minister of Health and Population Welfare Dr. Azra Fazal Pechuho on Tuesday decided on and suggested multiple measures to curb the spread of coronavirus in the province.
The decisions and suggestions were finalised in an internal departmental meeting.
It was suggested to Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to put a ban on large public gatherings like the ongoing Pakistan Super League (PSL) and to keep schools in the province shut down for a longer duration.
An advisory was to be issued Tuesday by the provincial government to avoid large public gatherings.
It was also decided to set up another health desk for screening purposes at Karachi airport, the desk will be manned by provincial health workers.
The meeting also decided to set up desks at all public and private hospitals in the province to provide information on the novel coronavirus. The government has also provided standard operating procedures (SOPs) to hospitals outlining steps to be taken to treat positive coronavirus cases.
In regards to quarantine procedures, the provincial health department will issue an advisory asking people to self-quarantine for 14 days if they have recently arrived in Pakistan from coronavirus-hit countries.
Pechuho was further informed during the meeting that Gadap hospital has been prepared as an isolation facility for all confirmed coronavirus cases.
Nine people who recently returned from abroad were tested positive for novel coronavirus in Karachi on Monday, pushing the tally to 13 in Sindh and 16 in the country.
The Sindh Health Department said that of nine new cases, five people have arrived from Syria via Doha whereas other patients returned from London via Dubai last week.
So far 16 Pakistanis have been tested positive for COVID-19, the mysterious viral pneumonia-like disease caused by the novel coronavirus. Thirteen of them belong to Sindh while one has already fully recovered and discharged from the hospital in Karachi.
The new cases have emerged as all educational institutions in Sindh have been closed till March 13 over fears of the contagious disease’s outbreak in the province.