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Pakistan orders masks on domestic flights as Covid-19 n...

Covid-19

COVID-19

Pakistan orders masks on domestic flights as Covid-19 numbers rise

A Pakistani man receives a dose of a Covid-19 vaccine as the government achieves the milestone to fully vaccinate 100 million citizens in Hyderabad, Pakistan 07 March 2022. EPA-EFE/NADEEM KHAWAR
By Reuters
27 Jun 2022 0

KARACHI, Pakistan, June 27 (Reuters) - Pakistan’s aviation regulator has made masks mandatory on domestic flights given a gradual rise in the number of Covid-19 cases across the country, it said a statement.

The order comes a day after Pakistan’s biggest city, Karachi, reported that its Covid-19 positivity ratio, or the rate of positive cases out of all tests conducted, rose to 21% compared with a national rate of 2.8%.

“With immediate effect, mask wearing will be mandatory onboard domestic flights,” the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA) said in the statement late on Sunday.

Pakistan has had very few Covid-19 cases over recent months and had done away with almost all precautions.

But over the past 24 hours, the national Covid-19 positivity ratio had risen to 2.85% with 382 positive cases and two deaths, according to data released on Monday by the National Institute of Health, Islamabad (NIH).

A month ago, the positivity ratio was 0.54% with 79 positive cases and no deaths. According to the NIH, 85% of eligible Pakistanis have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

Pakistan disbanded the National Command and Operations Center, which was overseeing the Covid-19 response, on March 31 as infections fell to the lowest since the outbreak began in 2020.

By Syed Raza Hassan

(Reporting by Syed Raza Hassan; Editing by Robert Birsel)

Gallery

"Information pertaining to Covid-19, vaccines, how to control the spread of the virus and potential treatments is ever-changing. Under the South African Disaster Management Act Regulation 11(5)(c) it is prohibited to publish information through any medium with the intention to deceive people on government measures to address COVID-19. We are therefore disabling the comment section on this article in order to protect both the commenting member and ourselves from potential liability. Should you have additional information that you think we should know, please email [email protected]"

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