Coronavirus Alert: Pakistani Government to instal­l thermo scanne­rs at major airpor­ts to screen travel­lers

Pakistan has been reassured of full support and requested to follow the health protocols proposed by Chinese authorities.

Contrary to the spread rumors, the Foreign Office has confirmed on Sunday that all the Pakistani community members in Wuhan and other parts of China are safe from the coronavirus. The fast-spreading virus has killed dozens of people in China.

For safety, the government has decided to install thermo scanners at all big airports of the country, including Wagha border crossing, to check travelers. This has been done so to contain the deadly virus.

“This ministry and the Pakistan Embassy in China are actively monitoring the situation of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China. The Embassy in Beijing and other sub-Missions in China are also in touch with the Pakistani community as well as Chinese authorities,” Foreign Office spokesperson Aisha Farooqui said.

“Over 500 students and other community members in Wuhan, and in other parts of China, are safe. There is no report of infection in any Pakistani community member thus far,” she added.

Pakistan has been reassured of full support and requested to follow the health protocols proposed by Chinese authorities.

“The current situation calls for greater patience and perseverance’’, the spokesperson said.

Prior to this, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr. Zafar Mirza said that there was no report of any confirmed case of coronavirus from any part in the country.
In a statement, he said that the reports about cases in Multan were false and utmost vigilance was being maintained.

“An Emergency Operation Cell at the federal health ministry has been monitoring the situation round the clock.”

He said that any traveler from China, who shows flu-like symptoms will be isolated and monitored.

“Let me assure the people that the government is closely monitoring the situation and all necessary measures are being taken to a screen all travelers from China”, he said.

Health staff has been provided thermo scanners and thermo guns at airports in Karachi, Islamabad, and Lahore to check passengers. A separate team has been assigned for checking passengers arriving through flights from China.

China has also closed its outbound direct flights to Pakistan as a precautionary measure. According to the current schedule, South China Airline flights will continue from 29th January 2020 and China Airlines flights from 3rd February.

All major hospitals have been issued notices to make the needed arrangements to receive potential cases and provide them with the necessary care.

“We have established contacts with all provincial chief ministers, provincial health departments and relevant ministries, including Interior, dealing with immigration, aviation division, and National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) to ensure there is seamless coordination and that our efforts are synergized, timely and effectively”, Dr. Zafar said.

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