ISLAMABAD: The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Saturday amid spiking Covid-19 disease across the country discussed proposed lockdown in mega urban centers with higher disease prevalence.
The NCOC morning session was held here chaired by Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar flanked by National Coordinator NCOC. Keeping in view the surge rate of COVID-19, the Forum deliberated upon proposed lock downs in high disease prevalence cities if disease continues to rise or critical care facilities in that particular city is overwhelmed.
The decision on lockdown would be taken after deliberate discussion amongst all stake holders, the Forum decided.
It added that the purpose of lockdowns would be to contain disease spread through implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs).
The Forum was told that the few proposed restrictions would include closure of markets and malls, less essential services, ban on Intercity public transport and complete closure of education institutions.
The Forum also decided that the assistance of law enforcement agencies (LEAs) by Army, FC, Rangers, where requested by provincial governments would be provided.
The Forum also decided to extend two days inter provincial transport ban (on Saturday and Sunday) till 17th May 2021 The forum was informed that 0.5 million consignment of Sinopharm vaccine doses was reaching on Saturday (today) through a special PAF plane from China. It was also decided to allow walk-in facility to 60 years plus aged citizens.
A detailed briefing was also conducted on supply of oxygen to health care facilities. The Forum was apprised that a total of 6,901 beds have been inducted to meet the increased requirements due to surge in Covid-19 cases. However, Oxygen supply was also being critically monitored, the Forum was told.
The Forum also appreciated National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA)’s efforts in enhancing health care facilities; so far 2,811 oxygen beds, 431 ventilators, 1,196 oxygen cylinders, 500 bipap and 1,504 finger pulse oxymeters have been inducted into the existing health care system by NDMA.
By Syed Tauqeer Zaidi