pakistan vaccine covid
A resident receives a vaccine against coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at a drive-through vaccination facility in Karachi, Pakistan July 29, 2021. Image Credit: Reuters

Islamabad: Pakistan on Thursday achieved a milestone when the number of its active cases of COVID-19 dropped lower than 25,000 with the positivity rate coming down as well to 1.4 per cent.

According to the country’s National Command & Operation Centre (NCOC), Pakistan’s toll after 16 fatalities in the last 24 hours, reached 28,328 while 622 cases were reported against 44,334 tests conducted in the past one day.

The recovery rate is 95.8 per cent as 1,112 persons recovered from COVID-19 in 24 hours, the figure is almost twice the number of infections in one day, the NCOC data reveals. There are 24,699 active cases of COVID-19 in the country, it further shared the information on its portal.

Minister for Planning, Development & Special Initiative Asad Umar who is also chairman of the NCOC, in a tweet regarded Islamabad, Peshawar, Mirpur and Gilgit as the ‘best’ cities in the region with regard to people’s response to vaccination.

In the ‘good’ category were Skardu, Sargodha and Charsadda while Hyderabad, Nowshehra, Faisalabad, Quetta, Karachi, Mingora and Mardan needed to improve, according to the tweet. “District admin & health teams in these cities need to improve performance,” he said.

Unvaccinated people cautioned against 5th wave

In another post, Asad Umar cautioned the public to be vigilant and get vaccinated soon.

In order to ensure there is no 5th wave of COVID-19, we have to meet vaccination targets, said the minister in his tweet adding, otherwise despite short decline we would remain vulnerable.

Japan provides $6.59m equipment for COVID-19 response

The Japan government in order to enhance national capacity to store COVID-19 vaccine provided the cold chain optimisation equipment worth $6.59 million (Dh24.36 million) through the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Pakistan’s Parliamentary Secretary on Health, Dr Nausheen Hamid received the cold chain equipment from Ambassador of Japan, Matsuda Kuninori, in the presence of the UNICEF Representative in Pakistan, Aida Girma.

“We greatly value the significant contributions made by Japan during the last 70 years of its diplomatic relations with Pakistan,” said Dr Nausheen Hamid.

Ambassador Matsuda was of the view that Japan had prioritised the health sector as part of its development cooperation policy for Pakistan for decades, including Maternal & Child Health, Polio Eradication, Routine Immunisation and Counter-COVID-19 measures.

According to UNICEF Representative, Aida Girma, the ceremony reinforced the high level and longstanding support of the Government of Japan to UNICEF in its efforts to procure vaccines and essential equipment for strengthening immunisation services in Pakistan.