All doctors are our frontline heroes: Dr Zafar Mirza

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services Dr Zafar Mirza on Monday assured provision of personal protection equipment (PPE) kits to all medical practitioners working against coronavirus (COVID-19) at hospitals.

Addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Monday, he said that all doctors are our frontline heroes and a forward force in fight against coronavirus.

He condemned the incident happened with the young doctors and expressed his solidarity with them. He assured that the protection of doctors and nursing staff was the top priority of the government.

The special assistant acknowledged the services of health staff at hospitals in combating COVID-19, adding that the government was well aware of dedication and commitment of doctors and nursing staff at hospitals.

Dr Mirza said that citizens who were in isolation at homes could use simple surgical mask while N-95 mask was actually useful for medical staff deployed in hospitals for direct treatment of corona patients.

“So far 500,000 N-95 masks were available in the country and added that still further masks were needed,” he said and added medical staff deployed at isolation rooms should wear special kits while caregivers should use simple surgical masks on normal duties.

“Guidelines have been issued for use of PPE kits for health professionals, adding that working had been completed on need and requirement of all necessary medical equipment and health professionals to combat COVID-19,” he said.

The special assistant went on to say that a committee of experts had been constituted to submit recommendations on safety of new incoming or locally produced ventilators and to allow permission for marketing. He added another committee had been formed to submit recommendations on diagnostic kits.

Dr Mirza said: “The coronavirus caseload in Pakistan had reached 3,277 with 397 new cases reported during last 24 hours with 17 from Sindh, 330 from Punjab, 33 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). Six from Balochistan, four from Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT). Four from Gilgit Baltistan and three from Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).”

He said that so far 50 deaths had been reported from the disease with five deaths during last 24 hours. Added 257 patients had been recovered, adding that the global death rate from the disease is 5.45 while the situation was much better in Pakistan.

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