Forum reviews government plans for vaccination drive, including training of medical staff, prior to procurement and distribution
All travelers entering the country via airports, especially those from the U.K. and South Africa, are being tested for the novel coronavirus upon arrival and quarantined if their results are positive, the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) was informed on Monday.
According to a statement issued after a meeting that was also attended by representatives of the federal and provincial governments, the NCOC reviewed the prevailing pandemic situation. It noted that restrictions on inbound travelers were continuing during the ongoing second wave of the novel coronavirus and was briefed on plans for the country’s vaccination drive once the government secures the immunizations.
The NCOC said that provinces had nearly completed training for medical staff for the vaccination drives that were set to commence nationwide. “Provinces have almost completed the training of the staff of teaching hospitals, tehsil and district headquarters hospitals regarding COVID-19 vaccination for swift inoculation of the vaccine,” read the statement. It said that the participants reviewed that government’s vaccination procedure, the expected availability of vaccines, their distribution, and the areas where it should be used at the earliest. The forum stressed that the best quality vaccines should be procured to ensure successful inoculations of COVID-19 patients.
The press release said that the government would maintain a record of vaccinated persons, adding that visitors from abroad would also be required to provide documents affirming that they had been vaccinated. The provincial chief and health secretaries, meanwhile, said that all necessary measures were being taken prior to the availability of the COVID-19 vaccine. They said a large number of fines had been imposed, and several locations shuttered, on sectors violating government-issued standard operating procedures, including restaurants, shops and business centers.
The meeting, chaired by National Coordinator Lt. Gen. Hamooduz Zaman Khan, also reviewed critical COVID-19 data from all provinces, including positivity ratios, non-pharmaceutical interventions’ implementation, preparations for vaccine inoculation and the national vaccine strategy.
According to the NCOC, Karachi posted the highest positivity rate at 11.39 percent in the 24 hours prior to the meeting; Peshawar 9.72 percent; Mirpur 9.62 percent; Hyderabad 6.89 percent; Lahore 5.73 percent; Quetta 5 percent; Bahawalpur 4.32 percent; Faisalabad 4.18 percent; Abbottabad 3.11 percent; Islamabad 2.39 percent; Multan, 2.06 percent; Swat 1.89 percent; Gwadar 1.84 percent; and Rawalpindi 0.46 percent.