PMA demands uniform policy to control the spread of COVID19


More than 3000 HCPs infected,60 doctors have died
PMA demands uniform policy to
control the spread of COVID19
Govt. urged to fix charges of Tests,
hospitalization in private Labs, hospitals as well

KARACHI: Corona situation in Pakistan is worsening day by day. The number of corona patients and death due to corona is increasing rapidly. Till now over two lac thirty five people have been found positive for coronavirus and the number of deaths has also crossed a figure of four thousand five hundred as per official report. It is just because there does not exist, any uniform policy in Pakistan to control the spread of coronavirus. This was stated by the leadership of Pakistan Medical Association at a press conference which was addressed by Dr. Zaiser Sajjad GS PMA alongwith other representatives last week.

The further pointed out that Federal and Provincial Governments are not on the same page. People are confused over the pandemic due to the rivalry of our governments. People only take their patients to hospitals when they are at a very advanced state, likely to die an not much can be done to save them. When patient’s condition is worsened at hospitals or dies, the patient’s attendants start damaging the hospitals and brutally attack the healthcare professionals. This has been now going on in the country for the last many weeks.

Dr. Qaiser Sajjad General Secretary PMA (C) alongwith other representatives
addressing a press conference at PMA House recently.

There is panic in the society. Beds are not available in the hospitals. So, people are keeping their patients at home by turning a room into hospital. Federal Government was informing through press conferences or tweets that different drugs are helpful for the treatment of coronavirus. Similarly the government is also informing the people that oxygen and pulse Oximeter is needed to manage and monitor the patient. Now people have hoarded all these medicines and equipment’s, which is causing shortage and price hike of these products in the market. People are totally confused and are in panic, they are being advised through social media by some renowned persons not to go to hospital because they will declare you corona patient and the family will also be declared corona affected. Some government officials say COVID-19 is a simple cold & flue, it’s just grade –C virus. It is not so serious as compared to corona more people die in road traffic accident.

If Federal Government does not want to lock down the country then it should implement SOPs strictly throughout the country. There is no concept of Smart lockdown in the world. It is just a fun. Streets are being closed by tents and everything is happening behind the curtain, there is no prohibition over any activity behind the tent. one can stepwise impose smart lockdown, only when numbers of cases goes down. PMA believes that during smart lockdown Government should collect data (age, sex, co-morbid) of the areas being locked, random testing for coronavirus should also be done in these areas. The world Model to control COVID-19 is lockdown. The countries which followed this model and implemented strict lockdown are now lifting the lockdown because they have controlled the situation, whereas we ignored it and did not implement even after the advice from WHO. We are now facing the consequences of our mistakes.

The reported decrease in the number of cases is because we have reduced the number of tests being performed. Our corona testing capacity is not up to the mark. We should have 25,000 testing capacity per day in each province. People have been left with no option other than to go to private labs. Government should manage for the treatment of coronavirus and fix the rate of corona test and hospital charges with the consultation of the management of labs / hospitals. Government should also not allow to sale any medicines and health related items without the prescription of qualified doctor.

The number of healthcare professionals who have been infected with COVID19 is now more than three thousand who are in in isolation after being corona positive. On one hand the burden of disease on hospitals is increasing while on the other hand we are facing shortage of health care workers. Because of this situation doctors and paramedics are suffering the most. Till now 60 doctors and paramedics have died due to coronavirus. PMA believes that we should follow the advice of WHO otherwise the number of cases and deaths will increase. PMA suggest strictly implementing SOPs during Eid-ul-Azha or be ready for another hard time like we faced after Ramadan. We suggest government not to allow holding of cattle markets for sacrificial animals inside the cities.

Mr. Faisal Edhi who was also present on this occasion informed the media that they have conducted a study on 813 deaths in Karachi from 1st June 2020 to 27th June 2020. It showed that 70% deaths were in the age group of 45-70.

PMA and all the participants demanded that:

  1. Complete strict lockdown as per advise of WHO to prevent spread of COVID-19 / smart lockdown should be implemented with strict SOPs.
  2. Government should protect healthcare workers from coronavirus and from the violent mob who attack healthcare workers in hospitals.
  3. Coronavirus testing should be done at the areas of lockdown and proper data should also be recorded.
  4. DRAP / Healthcare Commission should manage the panic situation in the country regarding the management of coronavirus.
  5. Treatment of all corona patients should be free of cost even at private hospitals with consultation of hospitals management.
  6. No medicine / Health related items should be sold without the prescription of qualified medical practitioner.
  7. No load-shedding until we are facing COVID-19 pandemic.
  8. No cattle market should be established within the city and all the established market should follow all SOPs.
  9. There should not be any shortage of medicine in Pakistan (corona or non-corona medicine).

Those who were present at the press conference included:

  1. Dr. S.M. Qaisar Sajjad, Secretary General PMA Centre
  2. Mr. Faisal Edhi, Head of the Edhi Foundation
  3. Dr. Qazi M. Wasiq, Treasurer PMA Centre
  4. Ms. Uzma Noorani, Co-Chairperson Human Rights Commission of Pakistan
  5. Dr. Muhammad Usman Mako, President-Elect PMA Sindh
  6. Ms. Anis Haroon Member National Commission for Human Rights Pakistan
  7. Dr. Abdul Ghafoor Shoro, General Secretary PMA Karachi
  8. Ms. Mehnaz Rehman, Resident Director, Aurat Foundation
  9. Mr. Anwar Kashif Mumtaz, member public interest law association of Pakistan.