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Vaccination best defense against highly-transmissible Omicron variant: NCOC



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ISLAMABAD:-In the last seven days, 60% of cases of the new Omicron variant in Pakistan have been reported in Karachi and Lahore, NCOC chief Asad Umar has revealed. “In the upcoming three weeks, the virus is going to spread across the country.”

At a media briefing on Wednesday, the minister emphasised vaccination for protection against the new variant. “If you look at global statistics, Omicron is highly transmissible. In South Africa, the virus spread like wildfire because the majority of its population was unvaccinated.”

In Pakistan, too, there are imminent signs of the 5th wave of the virus. The cases have increased by three times and people in big cities are at the highest risk, Umar pointed out.

In Karachi, cases have increased by 8.5 times. The trend is similar in Punjab. And these cases will continue to rise.

“It is, therefore, very important for people immediately get immunised. If you haven’t gotten your second dose, get it now. Get your families vaccinated too.”

Dr Faisal Sultan, special assistant to the PM on Health, added that Pakistan’s data on vaccination shows that the infection rate of the disease in immunised people is way less than those not vaccinated.

“Vaccines are protecting everyone. But it’s especially important for women and the elderly to get inoculated,” he stressed.

On Omicron, Dr Sultan said that presently available vaccines are equipped for protection against the new variant. “So far, over 350 Omicron cases have been reported in Islamabad, Karachi, and Lahore.”

Even though it is mild, we can’t stay under the impression that it won’t be lethal. The SAPM outlined these precautionary measures from the strain:

Meanwhile, Pakistan reported over 800 cases in a day on Wednesday, according to the National Command and Operation Centre. The positivity ratio has increased to 1.8%.

Earlier in the day, Karachi reported 23 new Omicron cases.

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