Pakistan starts screening all international passengers over new Omicron variant - GulfToday

Pakistan starts screening all international passengers over new Omicron variant


A health worker checks the temperature of a woman at Karachi Airport.

Tariq Butt, Correspondent

Pakistani Health authorities have said that a surveillance system has been installed at all entry points of Pakistan to monitor incoming passengers in the wake of the threat posed by the new BF.7 Omicron variant of Covid-19.

The health officials said that instructions had been issued to the concerned authorities to ensure that passengers entering Pakistan go through thermal scanners installed at airports across the country.

An official of the Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations, and Coordination said several additional measures had been taken to prevent the spread of the sub-variant.

He stated that an "efficient system with a proper management team is fully functional” in the country to remain vigilant and was ready to make an emergency plan to deal with any sub-variant of Covid-19.

In case of any untoward situation, he pointed out, the health system was "fully prepared to deal with any sub-variant” of the Omicron variant, including BF.7, in the country.

The official added that medical staff at intensive care units (ICU) of hospitals across the country were also active to handle any situation. He said that genome sequencing was initiated in laboratories of all four provinces and the federal capital.

"Ninety per cent of the country’s population has already received the Covid-19 vaccine so they are safe,” he added.

The official further said that special directions were issued to ensure the availability of an adequate quantity of ventilators, oxygen supplies, and antiviral medicines in the hospitals.

Meanwhile, as per data shared by the National Institute of Health (NIH), 26 new coronavirus cases were reported during the last 24 hours across the country. The case positivity ratio is 0.75 percent while 14 patients were in critical condition.

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