ISLAMABAD - The city health authorities on Friday sealed five more educational institutions in the same week after confirmation of around 20 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in different institutions in a single day. The District Health Office (DHO) after confirmation of the COVID-19 cases in educational institutions asked the Deputy Commissioner Office (DCO) of the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) to seal the said institutions and dis-infect the building premises. Earlier, the DHO had sealed three institutions after confirmation of the COVID-19 cases. The institutions where the virus was confirmed include public and private institutions and a department of the university.

According to the letter issued by the DHO, the institutions sealed include Islamabad Model School G-6/3-1, Pak-Turk Marif International H-8/1, OPF Boys College H-8/4, English Department National University of Modern Languages (NUML) and another private institution. According to details, two cases were confirmed at ICB G-6/3-1, two in Pak Turk H-8/1, two in OPF Boys College H-8/4, three cases in NUML and 12 cases in a private educational institute.

The DHO office also directed to close the institutions for 14 days and dis-infect the building premises. The letter further said COVID-19 testing of all the exposed staff/students must be performed and adherence to SOP’s must be ensured. All the contacts of the case must be quarantined for a period of 14 days. Earlier, health authorities on Wednesday sealed three educational institutions in the city after confirmation of COVID-19 cases there. The institutions included department of NUML, Islamabad Model College for Girls F-6/2 and a private institution at I-8. AEOs directed the principals to follow the guidelines and all respective Area Education Officers, Director Colleges and Director Academics are always available to respond to any queries or information in this regard. The government had announced re-opening of primary level educational institutions across the country in continuation of re-opening of the educational institutions closed due to the COVID-19 situation in the country. This was announced at a press briefing held in the NCOC by Minister for FE&PT Shafqat Mehmood along with SAPM on NHS Dr. Faisal Sultan.

Speaking on the occasion, he said that anti-dengue teams should be well aware of their responsibilities as current weather conditions were most favourable for the growth of dengue larvae.

He also reprimanded the departments for carrying out surveillance activities through Android mobile phones and directed departmental action against the negligent staff. He issued stern warnings to some other departments over their performances.

He urged the assistant commissioners to hold meetings regularly and keep him posted round the clock. 

He said that campaign against the dengue should continue with full vigour in the entire district. 

District Coordinator Epidemics Control Dr Aurangzaib informed about the surveillance activities and said that 38 FIRs had been registered so far while larvae identified at 2,962 places were dismantled.

Precaution only way to stay safe from smog: Citizens should take all precautionary measures in order to protect themselves from the hazardous effects of smog in the changing weather.

This was stated by Medical Social Officer (MSO) of Faisalabad Institute of Cardiology (FIC) Aasia Faqir Hussain while distributing pamphlets on precautionary measures among patients’ attendants and others in different wards of the FIC on Friday.

General Secretary Heart Saver Foundation Kashif Farooq, Manager Asma Muzammil also distributed pamphlets.

The Medical Social Officer informed that smog that developed in the atmosphere during cold weather due to the combination of fog and smoke could be harmful for human health.

She asked the citizens to inform their family members, neighbours and surroundings on the ways to avoid the harmful effects of smog. 

General Secretary Heart Saver Foundation says timely awareness of climate change was essential to meet these challenges in future.