Altaf Hamid Rao.
MIRPUR (AJK): (Parliament Times) Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) President Sardar Masood Khan said on Tuesday Pakistan and AJK government’s coordinated and coherent efforts and timely decision-making strategy enormously help lower COVID-19 fatality and infection rate in the country.
“With the grace of Almighty Allah, we have achieved something which the best prepared developed countries had failed to attain to deal with the pandemic, he said while talking to a high-level National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) delegation, AJK President office told media here Tuesday evening.
Headed by Executive Director National Institute of Health (NIH) Major General Amer Ikram, the delegation is currently visiting AJK to assist in the testing ramp up and contact tracing for reopening of educational institutions.
The President said with the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) and National Institute of Health, the federal government, armed forces of Pakistan, all the four provincial governments and the Azad Kashmir government had taken preventive measures in time that have significantly contributed to flattening the pandemic curve.
The AJK President told the delegation that the timely measures adopted by the state government, efforts of the physicians and the paramedical staff at the risk of their own lives, cooperation from ulema and mushaikh, and above all the cooperation of the people with the government had gone a long way to cope with this test and the challenge.
“We are still constantly apprising the people that the danger is not yet over, and as such they must not abandon preventive measures,” Khan said.
He added that on the one hand, the Azad Kashmir government had successfully controlled the pandemic through effective lockdown, while on the other the immediate support from the NCOC, NIH and other agencies also helped us to prevent the spread of the pandemic.
The president maintained that the federal government through Ehsas emergency cash program helped us tackle the major economic challenge in the wake of strict lockdown, and at the same time the state government through its own resources and with the cooperation of NGOs provided support to the people economically affected by the pandemic.
About the overall public health situation in Azad Kashmir, the state president said that change in the lifestyle of the people had alarmingly increased cardiac diseases, hypertension, and cancer etc, and we need cooperation and support from the federal government and the international health organizations to overcome these diseases.
He said we need telemedicine technology to provide health facilities to the people living in far-flung areas, and big hospitals of Punjab and other areas of Pakistan are ready for cooperation in this regard. Health infrastructure exists in Azad Kashmir, but we need modern diagnostic labs and health technology as well as trained staff.
On the occasion, the leader of NCOC delegation Maj. Gen. Amir Ikran said that the National Coordination Committee for Coronavirus has stepped up its efforts to provide Covid-19 vaccine to the Pakistani people. He added that clinical trials of the vaccine manufactured by China will start shortly.
He said that initially Covid-19 vaccine will be provided to about 20 million people in the country.