Tuesday Apr 07 2020

Will expand capacity to conduct 25,000 coronavirus tests daily until end of April: Asad Umar


ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister Asad Umar said on Tuesday that the government aims to eventually increase its coronavirus testing capacity up to 25,000 per day until the end of this month.

The federal minister was addressing a press conference, along with Special Assistant to PM on Health Dr Zafar Mirza, where he spoke about the coronavirus spread in the country.

Umar said that the federal government is doing everything to aid the province in the battle against the disease.

Speaking on the Ehsaas programme, he said that in the first phase, around four million households will be given cheques to aid them during this difficult time. The cheques will be given through 16,923 point of sales across the country. 

He explained that the point of sales system has been put in place to encourage social distancing and to ensure that people do not infect each other with the coronavirus. 

The minister said that the government will send 153 ventilators to hospitals across Pakistan, starting Thursday.

“The federal government is working for people throughout Pakistan in each province. It is working for healthcare workers, businesses, and other institutions,” he said.

Umar cautioned masses regarding the dangerous spread of the coronavirus and how it can prove lethal. “Britain is recognised for having the best healthcare system in the world yet its PM Boris Johnson has been shifted to an ICU,” he said.

‘Huge number in recovery phase’

SAPM Dr Mirza said that in the country the number of confirmed caes is 3,434 and a huge number is in the state of recovery.

He said that in the past 24 hours, 577 new cases were registered, while so far, 429 have completely recovered.

“28 patients so far are in the ICU,” said the SAPM, adding that the death ratio due to the virus is 1.4 in Pakistan.

He expressed hope that in the near future medical kits in millions will be available across the country, saying that the number of laboratories conducting the tests will be increased to 32 and then 40.

As of Tuesday, Pakistan recorded more than 4,000 cases of the coronavirus and 55 deaths.