9 deaths, 459 cases reported from twin cities

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10 site offices of illegal housing schemes sealed

Rawalpindi : Coronavirus illness, COVID-19 has claimed another nine lives in Islamabad Capital Territory and Rawalpindi district in the last 24 hours while 459 new patients have been tested positive from the region that is the highest number of patients reported in a day from the region after June 18.

The region is being hit hard by the second wave of COVID-19 outbreak and considering the increase in the number of cases in Rawalpindi district, Specialized Healthcare and Medical Education Department (SHC&ME Department) at Government of Punjab through a letter issued on Thursday directed to revive Covid related arrangements in Rawalpindi Institute of Urology at full capacity as was done in June 2020.

In this regard, the SHC&ME Department issued an order dated November 13 entrusting the additional charge of the post of Medical Superintendent at Rawalpindi Institute of Urology and Transplantation to Additional Principal Women Medical Officer APWMO Dr. Nausheen Mehboob serving in BS-19 at Benazir Bhutto Hospital with immediate effect till the arrival of regular incumbent. The post of MS at RIU was lying vacant after the retirement of former MS at RIU Dr. Khalid Randhawa on October 27. What a coincidence it is that Dr. Nausheen is the wife of Dr. Randhawa.

The additional charge given to Dr. Nausheen has raised a number of questions in the minds of a number of senior health officials serving in the health sector in the district. A senior official pleading anonymity said there have been more than a dozen officers serving in BS-20 in the district including allied hospitals in town though none of them has been given charge of the seat of MS RIU.

Corona is hitting the population badly in the district that is causing unrest among health professionals and at this time, the government must take care of its employees including senior ones, said another BS-10 officer serving at allied hospitals.

It is important that in the last 24 hours, as many as 102 cases have been reported from Rawalpindi district along with seven deaths in a day while from ICT, 357 new cases have been reported along with two deaths on Friday.

District Health Officer ICT Dr. Muhammad Zaeem Zia has recommended the immediate closure of another four educational institutions on Friday. The number of COVID-19 patients is on a continuous rise and the health department is working hard to control the spread of the virus, however any decision regarding the closure of businesses and educational institutions would be taken by the higher authorities if required, he said.

In the last 24 hours, as many as two patients died of the disease in the federal capital from where another 357 cases have been reported taking tally to 23,122 of which 19,808 have recovered while 250 have lost their lives. The number of active cases of the illness in ICT was 3,064 on Friday.

Another seven deaths caused by COVID-19 in Rawalpindi district in the last 24 hours took the death toll to 349 while confirmation of 102 new patients positive took the tally to 7,559 of which 6,687 achieved a cure.

As many as 44 patients are undergoing treatment at the healthcare facilities in the district while 479 confirmed patients of the disease have been in home isolation, said Executive District Officer (Health) Rawalpindi Dr. Sohail Ahmed Chaudhary while talking to ‘The News’. He said another 789 suspects of the disease are in-home quarantine in the district.

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