PESHAWAR - Adviser to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister (CM) for Information and Public Relations Ajmal Khan Wazir on Thursday said the government was increasing the capacity of major hospitals in the province in order to deal with the coronavirus more efficiently.

He said that 176 beds had been provided to major hospitals for the coronavirus patients while during the last 10 days, 32 ICUs and 144 high dependency units’ (HDU) beds had also been added.

Briefing the media here at the Civil Secretariat ITLAA Cell, Ajmal Wazir said that another 1,000 ICU and HDU beds would be added in the next two months on the orders of Chief Minister Mahmood Khan.

Similarly, a corona centre, having the capacity of 50 ICU and 150 HDU beds, would be setup at the Peshawar Institute of Cardiology in collaboration with National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). Wazir said that 19 more ventilators and 11 HDU beds had been provided to the Lady Reading Hospital, Peshawar. “Five more ICU beds have been added to Hayatabad Medical Complex and 36 beds at Khyber Teaching Hospital,” he explained.

He further said an eight-bed ICU ward had been set up at DHQ Charsadda while a 32-bed HDU had been set up at Women and Children’s Hospital, Rajar. Similarly, HDU of 25 beds had been set up in Swat for the coronavirus patients, while 20 more HDUs had been set up in Nowshera and Swabi, he told media.

Wazir informed that owners of 249 petrol pumps were penalised across the province during the last 24 hours over violation of the standard operating procedures (SOPs). “The district administrations have issued warnings to the owners of 121 petrol pumps and imposed fines of Rs211,000 on 54 others,” he added.

Regarding the measures being taken in KP to eliminate locusts, Ajmal Wazir said that fumigation over 55,871 acres of land was completed on June 17, while a survey had been conducted about 45,59,932 acres of land, adding that 80 teams, comprising 758 personnel, were engaged in the anti-locust operation.

Later, Ajmal Wazir visited the Passport Office, Peshawar where the officials briefed him on the situation with respect to SOPs adopted there. The advisor witnessed the situation, and expressed his satisfaction.

On this occasion, the passport officials told Wazir that due to coronavirus, only urgent services were being provided at the office and each and every person was being checked for the virus before entry in the office.