The ratio of positive cases has dropped from 8.63 per cent to 6.8 per cent in the past week, said Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, chairing a meeting of the Provincial Task Force on the Coronavirus on the day.
He thanked citizens for cooperating with the government and following the coronavirus-related standard operating procedures (SOPs) and restrictions.
"If the support of the people continues, we will be able to contain the spread of the virus further in the province," said Shah.
Provincial ministers, advisors, Sindh IGP, health experts and representatives of the Corps V and Sindh Rangers, among other officials, attended the meeting.
The meeting was briefed that the positivity rate was recorded at 8.63 per cent in the first week after Eidul Fitr - May 15 to 21 - and a fatality rate of 1.18 per cent was witnessed. In the second week from May 22 to 26, however, a decline can be observed with the positivity ratio dropping down to 6.87 per cent and the fatality ratio at 0.90 per cent.
Observing that the situation is improving, the CM credited citizens for abiding with the SOPs and restrictions imposed by the government.
The meeting was apprised that last year Eidul Fitr fell on May 24, 2020, and on that day a 15 per cent detection rate was recorded. The number of new cases increased from 846 on May 24 to 3,038 on June 11, 2020, and the positivity ratio rose to 30 per cent.
The meeting concluded that the spike was due to non-compliance on SOPs.
This is why strict measures were taken ahead of and after Eidul Fitr this year, said the CM, adding that the efforts have been fruitful.
This year, on May 20, the infectivity rate in Karachi was 12.86 per cent and in Hyderabad it was at 10.11 per cent and by May 26, it has come down to 8.43 per cent in Karachi and 4.42 per cent in Hyderabad, the meeting was briefed.
It was further apprised that the current month at least 307 persons succumbed to the coronavirus in the province. Of them 24 patients had been on ventilators, 60 succumbed to the disease after they were taken off the ventilator and 14 people died of the infection at home.
Besides, the meeting was briefed that the highest positivity ratio in the first three weeks of May was seen in Karachi's district East at 24 per cent, district South at 17 per cent, Central at 12 per cent and West at 11 per cent. The positivity ratio remained high in Hyderabad as well at 11 per cent.
The meeting was apprised that in this month - till May 25 - around 21,618 passengers have landed at Jinnah International Airport in Karachi and all of them were tested. As many as 50 passengers tested positive for the coronavirus and of them 26 have recovered.
Reviewing the situation, the CM decided to maintain the restrictions currently in place. "It is very important to be safe and secure, otherwise we will not be able to contain the virus here," said Shah, urging citizens to get vaccinated.
The meeting is scheduled to convene again on Monday to review the situation.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 28th, 2021.