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New COVID-19 variants found in Pakistan

South African and Brazilian variants of the novel coronavirus disease have been found in Pakistan’s Sindh province, a senior minister said, expressing fears that a massive spread of the variants could lead to a collapse of the health infrastructure

May 01, 2021
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COVID-19 in Pakistan

South African and Brazilian variants of the novel coronavirus disease have been found in Pakistan’s Sindh province, a senior minister said, expressing fears that a massive spread of the variants could lead to a collapse of the health infrastructure.

Sindh Health Minister Azra Pechuho said genomic studies done by the Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH) on 13 samples revealed 10 were of the UK variant, two of the South African variant while the other was found to be of the Brazilian variant, Tribune reported.

In a video message posted on the Sindh Health and Population Welfare Department's official Twitter account, the provincial health minister said these strands of COVID-19 have the potential to bring the current healthcare facilities to the brink of collapse.

Warning that the UK variant was more lethal and spread more rapidly, with around 60 percent infectivity rate, the health minister said the fatality rates for all three variants were high.

“This is an emergency as these variants are not vaccine responsive either,” Pechuho claimed.

“Therefore it is important for everyone to take all necessary precautions & take this seriously,” she asserted.

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