First coronavirus case emerges in Pakistan, tally rises to two

KARACHI: Two cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Pakistan’s port city, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr Zafar Mirza confirmed on Wednesday, minutes after the first case was reported in Pakistan’s port city.

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“I can confirm first two cases of corona virus in Pakistan. Both cases are being taken care of according to clinical standard protocols & both of them are stable,” Dr Mirza wrote on Twitter.

He also noted that there was “no need to panic [as] things are under control”.

The second case was reported in Islamabad and was shifted to a quarantine in the capital’s Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS).

Earlier, a spokesperson for the Sindh health department confirmed that the 22-year-old patient — Pakistan’s first case — had arrived in aeroplane from Iran and has a history of travel to Tehran from where he reportedly acquired the virus.

Most arrangements made by centre

While the young man recently arrived here in Karachi by bus, it was unclear as to when exactly he left for Iran and when reached Pakistan.

According to reports, the coronavirus patient and his family were immediately placed in quarantine at a private hospital on the National Stadium Road. The federal health department was, as of reporting time, examining the passengers he has travelled with.

Further, the provincial health department was set to dispatch a team to inspect his residence as well as his neighbourhood.

Sindh government spokesperson Senator Murtaza Wahab confirmed the case and said: “All safety measures have been taken and we will emergency steps after this case. Most arrangements are being made by the centre but the Sindh government will play its part as well.”

The virus has originated in China, where it has killed more than 2,700 people so far.

Around the world, over 80,000 people have been infected with coronavirus, as per the World Health Organization (WHO), with most of the cases in China — above 78,000.

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