Prominent doctors of Karachi have demanded the provincial government impose a stricter lockdown to save human lives.
Dr. Abdul Bari, head of the Indus Hospital, and other senior professionals addressed a press conference at Karachi Press Club on Wednesday. There, he urged people to adhere to the COVID-19 restrictions and not take the disease lightly.
He stated that since the lockdown has been eased, and people violated coronavirus guidelines, the number of COVID-19 cases in Sindh has surged by 40 percent in the last five days.
We have seen a rapid increase in the numbers in last 5 days.
Bari highlighted that dedicated hospitals for coronavirus patients are running out of capacity.
The Indus Hospital, Aga Khan University Hospital, and Dow University Hospital are full while Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre and the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplant are at 80 percent saturation.
He also highlighted that the Expo Centre field hospital also hosts 175 stable patients. The hospital currently has a 200-bed capacity.
Dr. Saad Khalid Niaz of the Dow University of Health Science predicted that the cases will boom in the next few days if a stricter lockdown is not imposed, adding that there will be no beds in hospitals to admit coronavirus patients.
Lamenting that lack of facilities for doctors and medical staff, Dr. Niaz highlighted that 162 members of their community had contracted the virus while treating COVID-19 patients.
He highlighted that there is a shortage of health professionals in the county who can deal with the pandemic.
Dr. Atif Hafeez Siddiqui, representing Pakistan Islamic Medical Association (PIMA) demanded the government impose a stricter lockdown to control the spread of the virus.
About Reopening Mosques
Doctors are also unhappy about the government’s decision to reopen mosques for group prayers during Ramadan and appealed to the religious leaders to reconsider their decision.
Dr. Bari said that doctors did not want mosques to be locked down, but only staff should be allowed to offer congregational prayers, not the public. He emphasized that Taraweeh should be offered at home as it is not an obligatory prayer.
Pakistan Medical Association General Secretary, Dr. Qaiser Sajjad said that the government and religious scholars’ decision to reopen mosques is a dangerous move.
Though mosques not following the pre-established SOPs will be sealed, it would be too late by that time.
He retreated his demand for closure of all business and religious activities, Bari said Sindh government’s lockdown measure was a good move in the start, but it became a joke later on.