Islamabad [Pakistan], June 22 (ANI): Pakistan health experts on Tuesday expressed concern over the recent spike in Covid-19 community cases and warned that the surge might turn into a sixth wave of the pandemic.
The medical experts urged people to wear face masks and maintain social distancing to prevent themselves from the deadly virus, reported The News.
Mild symptoms are being observed among the infected people, and the situation can turn out of control if preventive measures are not taken by the people, the doctors warned.
Karachi has become the most affected city after registering 340 positive community cases. The officials from the health department said that the port city recorded 10.69 per cent positivity rate in the last seven days, local media reported.
Of 9,892 Covid-19 tests conducted to detect the presence of the virus in the rest of Sindh, 34 were positive.
204 more people have tested positive for coronavirus in the last 24 hours after 13,300 tests were conducted which increased the positivity ratio to 1.53%, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH).
Notably, 66 infected people were admitted to intensive-care units (ICU) in hospitals.
Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS) professor Dr Saeed Khan stated that BA.5 variant has been reported in Pakistan, and it is being transmitted locally.
"While other [old] sub-variants of Omicron are also being reported in Karachi, this one is more contagious since it's a new one and has been cause of concern in other parts of the world," said Khan.
DUHS professor also mentioned that the unvaccinated, the elderly and people with compromised immunity are particularly at risk.
The absence of Covid-19 preventive measures in public places, the general public's reluctance to get a booster shot, and the genetic difference among the variants cause them to transmit faster, he added.
Aga Khan University professor Dr Faisal Mahmood said, "the introduction of the new variant BA.4 and BA.5, which can cause reinfections, increased travel -- especially to Saudi Arabia for Umrah and Turkey for vacations -- as well as the fact that six months have passed since the last booster, and that people have stopped wearing masks," are among the major reasons for the spike in the community cases.
People do not go for COVID-19 tests if their symptoms are mild, professor Mahmood said, adding that the total number of cases is greater than the reported cases due to the inability to record home testing kits. (ANI)