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Tuesday Jun 09 2020

Health sector resources at risk of exhaustion as COVID-19 patients rise in Islamabad, Rawalpindi

Photo: File

ISLAMABAD/RAWALPINDI: COVID-19 cases in the next few days may exhaust Islamabad and Rawalpindi's health resources as cases of the virus continue to surge and patients continue to visit hospitals for treatment, The News reported on Monday. 

It is obvious that the lockdown observed by the majority of nations almost all across the globe was to slow down the spread of coronavirus and not to eliminate it and the main purpose of slowing down the spread was to save resources from getting exhausted, said a top official at the health department pleading anonymity.

He said the resources at the health department may not be able to deal with COVID-19 patients in the next few days. The source further said that the healthcare facilities designated for management of COVID-19 patients in the Rawalpindi district have already reached saturation points and the hospitals have no space for mild to moderate cases of the disease.

The official said the heavy burden of patients with severe illnesses can be gauged by the fact that on Monday, there were 110 COVID-19 patients on oxygen support at Benazir Bhutto Hospital along with 19 patients on ventilator support. 

It is important that as many as 969 confirmed patients of COVID-19 have already been in isolation at their homes in the district and the number is on the rise with every passing day. With limited resources, one can only wonder how it would be possible for the teams of the health department to collect samples of such a huge number of patients for repeat tests, said the official.

He added the teams have already been overburdened by field work including contact tracing of patients testing positive. It is important that another 2,565 persons after being suspected to be patients of the disease have been under home quarantine in the district.

The data collected by The News on Monday reveals that COVID-19 claimed another three lives including one 46-year old male and two males of over 60 years of age in the district taking the death toll from Rawalpindi to 112. The three patients belonging to Rawal Town, Kahuta and Kallar Syedan died here at Corona Management Centre at Rawalpindi Institute of Urology, according to the health department.

As many as 82 new patients have been tested positive for COVID-19 in the district in the last 24 hours taking the tally to 2,715. The number of patients so far discharged after treatment from healthcare facilities reached 1260 on Monday while 112 have so far lost their lives, said Executive District Officer (Health) Dr Sohail Ahmed Chaudhary while talking to The News on Monday.

In the last 24 hours, the virus claimed another three lives in Islamabad Capital Territory taking the death toll to 52 while another 350 patients have been tested positive for COVID-19 from the federal capital taking the tally to 5329 of which 843 have so far recovered. On Monday, there were 4,434 active cases of coronavirus illness in the ICT according to the official figure released by the National Com­mand and Control Centre.

Originally published in The News