Pakistan begins to produce Vaccine


-Sindh renews COVID curbs amid rising cases
-Restricts all ‘unnecessary movement’ after 8pm
-CM says Sindh currently has half of country’s active cases
-57 more deaths, 3,060 new cases reported across Pakistan

By Ajmal Khan Yousafzai

ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services Dr Faisal Sultan on Monday announced that Pakistan has successfully produced its first-ever coronavirus vaccines with the help of China’s CanSino Biologics Inc.
In a twitter post, Dr Sultan congratulated the National Institute of Health for successfully producing the vaccine, adding that the move will step up the country’s vaccine supply.
“Congratulations to the NIH Pak team and its leadership for successful fill/finish (from concentrate) of the Cansino vaccine with the help of Cansino Bio Inc. China. The product has passed rigorous internal QA testing. An imp step to help in our vaccine supply line,” wrote Dr Sultan.
Back in April, NIH officials had said they would start the local production of CanSinoBio’s coronavirus vaccine in May. The NIH officials had said the arrangements to prepare CanSinoBio’s coronavirus vaccine were done, while the raw material for the vaccine reached Pakistan in early May.
Chinese experts were also present in Islamabad to help in the preparation of the vaccine, officials had said, adding NIH had started the venture in collaboration with a Chinese company.
Meanwhile on Monday, the Sindh government has imposed a sweeping restriction on ‘unnecessary movement’ after 8pm starting May 25 (today) citing rising COVID-19 cases in Karachi, Hyderabad and Sukkur cities.
A meeting of the provincial task force on coronavirus was held on Monday at CM House with Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah in the chair.
The decision to further tighten the restrictions came a day after the provincial authorities announced they were extending the current coronavirus restrictions for two more weeks. It was decided to impose a ban on people’s movement after 8pm and the provincial police chief was directed to stop people travelling in cars unnecessarily.
During the meeting, CM Shah said that if the masses follow the safety guidelines for two more weeks, the sharp post-Eid rise in COVID-19 cases will be limited.
“We can ease COVID restrictions in the city when new cases are controlled.”
The chief minister said that he will pay surprise visits to check the implementation of SOPs, adding that 50% of current total cases in the country are from Sindh.
He noted that complaints have beeb received from Karachi’s South and East districts and directed the respective deputy commissioners to ensure the implementation of safety protocols in their areas.
Mass vaccination: CM Shah also directed the provincial health minister to make arrangements for mass vaccination in industrial areas. He instructed to seek help from the industrialists.
“We have to protect our people by vaccinating them,” he said and directed deputy commissioners and SSPs to implement restrictions. COVID deaths, cases: The national tally on Monday of total active COVID-19 cases recorded 62,917 with 3,060 more people tested positive for the deadly virus and 2,693 people recovered from the disease during the last 24 hours.
Fifty-seven corona patients have died during past 24 hours, 52 of whom were under treatment in hospital and five out of the hospital in their respective quarantines or homes, according to the latest update issued by the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC).
During the past 24 hours, most of the deaths have occurred in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa followed by the Punjab. Out of the total 57 deaths occurred in the last 24 hours 17 of them had died who were under treatment on ventilators. There were 4,367 Covid infected patients under treatment in critical care in various Covid dedicated healthcare facilities in past 24 hours. The National Covid positivity ratio during past 24 hours was recorded 5.21 percent.
It may be mentioned here that the Covid positivity ratio was the percentage of actual positive cases appearing in every 100 tests performed to identify infected individuals.
According to John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the percent positive will be high if the number of positive tests is too high, or if the number of total tests is too low. A higher percent positive suggests higher transmission and that there are likely more people with coronavirus in the community who haven’t been tested yet.
The maximum ventilators were occupied in four major areas including Lahore 43 percent, Multan 67 percent, Bahawalpur 40 percent and Peshawar 35 percent.
The maximum Oxygen beds (alternate oxygen providing facility other than ventilator administered as per medical requirement of COVID patient) was also occupied in four major areas of Bahawalpur 37 percent, Swabi 47 percent, Peshawar 39 percent and Multan 59 percent.
Around 506 ventilators were occupied elsewhere in the country while no COVID affected person was on ventilator in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), Gilgit Baltistan (GB) and Balochistan.
Some 58,670 tests were conducted across the country on Sunday, including 21,808 in Sindh, 22,735 in Punjab, 7,533 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), 4,162 in Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), 1,254 in Balochistan, 458 in GB, and 720 in AJK. Around 820,374 people have recovered from the disease so far across Pakistan making it a significant count with over 90 percent recovery ratio of the affected patients.
Since the pandemic outbreak, a total of 903,599 cases were detected that also included the perished, recovered and under treatment COVID-19 patients so far, including AJK 18,808, Balochistan 24,583, GB 5,500, ICT 80,418, KP 129,883, Punjab 334,760 and Sindh 309,647.
About 20,308 deaths were recorded in country since the eruption of the contagion. Around 4,920 have perished in Sindh among nine of them died in hospital and two out of hospital on Sunday. 9,784 in Punjab had died with 16 deaths occurred in past 24 hours. 13 of them in the hospital and three out of hospital.
3,950 in KP where 26 of them died in hospital on Sunday, 745 in ICT, 270 in Balochistan, 107 in GB and 532 in AJK among four of them succumbed to the deadly virus in hospital on Sunday.
A total of 12,837,818 corona tests have been conducted so far, while 639 hospitals are equipped with COVID facilities. Some 4,763 corona patients were admitted in hospitals across the country.