Strict adherence to SoPs imperative for countering COVID-19's second wave.

ISLAMABAD -- The Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, provincial health departments and United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) on Wednesday urged the public to strictly adhere to COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs) in the wake of increasing number of infections in the country during the second wave of COVID-19.

While chairing an online event about Reinforcing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) during Second Wave of COVID-19, organized jointly by Ministry of National Health Services and UNICEF, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services, Dr. Faisal Sultan said, 'The second wave of COVID-19 is rapidly spreading and the virus is reaching areas in the country where the virus did not reach during the first wave.

He said 'the number of positive cases is increasing at a rapid pace and we have had to increase the capacity of treating COVID-19 cases in our hospitals.'

He said that with over 440,000 confirmed cases in the country till date, the government of Pakistan is once again taking strict measures to mitigate the spread of coronavirus infection in the country.

He said that provincial governments are following suit with health departments and administrative services enforcing necessary preventing measures at public places and encouraging people to protect themselves and others from the virus by adhering to the SoPs.

Referring to the incident of the Army Public School on this day in 2014, Dr Faisal said, 'We shall always remember our martyrs from the tragic event of APS in Peshawar and they shall always be alive in our hearts'.

'With increase in number of coronavirus infections, the number of patients in the hospitals has also increased," said Dr. Yasmin Rashid, Health Minister Punjab.

'This has happened because we did not continue to practice SoPs. We must wear a mask when going out as it reduces transmission of infection by 70 per cent. Proper hand washing with soap is very beneficial and so is social distancing. If we continue to practice all SoPs, I assure you that we will counter the second wave of COVID-19 just as successfully as we managed the first time,' she added.

In his message, Taimur Saleem Jhagra, Minister for Finance and Health, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa said, 'It is after 102 years that a pandemic such as COVID-19 has hit the world.'

'Pakistan countered the first wave very well but now the second wave has hit the country and it can be even more dangerous. I request...

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