The coronavirus cases in Pakistan on Saturday reached 1,321, including 11 deaths, with the Punjab province emerging as the new epicentre of the deadly viral infection in the country.
Punjab recorded a total of 448 COVID-19 cases on Saturday, up from 419 cases on Friday. The number surpassed Sindh's tally of 440 cases. Sindh was the province, which reported Pakistan's first coronavirus case.
Of the 448 cases in Punjab, the highest number of 207 were reported from Dera Ghazi Khan district. Most of the infected persons had returned from Iran, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar said.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa reported 180 cases, Balochistan registered 133, Gilgit-Baltistan recorded 91 cases, while it was 27 in Islamabad and 2 in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
Twenty-three people have recovered so far.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
Punjab chief ministe Buzdar tweeted that a 22-year-old COVID-19 patient died in Faisalabad, taking the total number of deaths due to the disease in the province to five.Meanwhile, Health Advisor Zafar Mirza said a team of eight Chinese doctors will arrive in Pakistan to review the steps taken by the government to combat coronavirus outbreak. They will share their experience with local doctors.