COVID Watch | 16th May 2020


Private Hospitals To Receive Virus Patients

Doctors bodies assured during a meeting with the Sindh health minister that no COVID-19 patient may be refused treatment at private and public hospitals. However, very recently the Sindh government brokered an agreement with 5 private hospitals to treat poor and destitute virus patients who would otherwise be unable to afford the treatment at the expense of the authorities.

Plasma Therapy Finds Success

The first coronavirus patient to receive plasma therapy as part of a series of Sindh government-approved clinical trials recovered from the contagious disease at the Liaquat University Hospital (LUH) in Hyderabad. The patient, a lawyer, was admitted along with his wife and child, who also tested positive for the virus although with mild symptoms. The patient’s condition had seriously deteriorated when doctors gave him plasma donated by a recovered coronavirus patient. The patient recovered within 12 days, and finally tested negative on Thursday, May 14. Doctors suspect that without plasma therapy, the patient would likely have been put on a ventilator.

Sewage May Help Detect Clusters

Testing sewage for COVID-19 particle traces as countries begin easing lockdowns may be able to detect outbreak spots, say experts. The virus is not only secreted through water droplets when one coughs or sneezes, but are also present in fecal matter and urine. Wastewater epidemiologists propose that sewage surveillance and sampling may be able to identify infection clusters in certain geographic areas without having to resort to mass testing, thereby saving precious resources.

Prayer Leader Among 4 Test Positive

A mosque situated amidst the commercial area at Faisal Shaheed Road in Taxila was sealed by local authorities after the mosque’s prayer leader and 3 other worshippers tested positive for the virus. The mosque’s patrons frequent some of the most densely populated markets in the area, including Mughal Market.

Centre Preventing Immediate Burials

The Sindh government stated that under orders of the federal government, hospitals and other authority bodies cannot hand over deceased COVID-19 patients to their families for immediate burial without following a strict set of SOPs. Delays in burials and precautions for funeral rites have caused agitation among aggrieved relatives of coronavirus victims. While the Sindh government has no objection to allowing families the dignity of receiving and burying their loved ones in a respectable manner, the federal government, however, is not willing to budge on altering SOPs to the satisfaction of such families.