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Balochistan reports 6 cases of Congo virus

11:38 PM | 9 Jun, 2024
Balochistan reports 6 cases of Congo virus
Source: File photo

QUETTA – Health officials in Pakistan’s Balochistan province reported six cases of the Congo virus, or Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), this year, warning that the number could rise ahead of Eid Al-Adha.

The Congo virus is a highly contagious disease transmitted by ticks and contact with infected animals. It leads to severe symptoms and can be fatal if not treated promptly, particularly in endemic regions such as parts of Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.

Officials at Fatima Jinnah Chest Hospital in Quetta, the only facility in Balochistan treating Congo virus patients, said three of the six patients were women who have been discharged after treatment, while three men remain in the hospital’s isolation ward.

“Six people have tested positive for the Congo virus in Balochistan so far this year,” said Kausar Shahen, a staff nurse at the hospital, adding that all six cases were reported in June. “The number of cases can go up before Eid Al-Adha.”

Qudratullah, a 22-year-old dairy farmer from Killa Abdullah district, tested positive for the virus this week. “A week ago, I started suffering high fever and body pain,” he said. “I took tablets but it did not work, then I was shifted to Quetta [Fatima Jinnah Chest Hospital] and here they told me I was Congo virus-positive.”

Qudratullah’s white blood cell count had dropped to 63,000, compared to the normal 150,000, but he was in much better condition after treatment, according to medics.

In 2023, 54 people tested positive for the Congo virus, with 18 fatalities, including a doctor and a paramedic. Cases are typically reported in Balochistan during June, July, and August, with a higher spread around Eid Al-Adha due to increased animal slaughter.

“We lost Dr. Shukrullah Langove while he was being shifted to Karachi last year,” said Dr. Dawood Baloch of the Young Doctors Association. “If we had a single ICU [in the province], his life could have been saved.” He suggested fumigation and strict precautionary measures at slaughterhouses as effective ways to combat the virus.

The Balochistan government is taking measures to prevent the spread of the virus ahead of Eid. “Our livestock department has started spray campaigns, the regional blood bank is providing blood, and the government has released funds to purchase platelet kits for patients,” said Shahid Rind, a provincial government spokesperson.

Daily Pakistan Global Web Desk

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Currency Rates Today - Pakistani Rupee to US Dollar, Euro, Pound, Dirham, Riyal - 19 July 2024

Pakistani currency rates against US Dollar and other currencies on July 19, 2024 (Friday) in open market.

USD to PKR Rate Today

US dollar was being quoted at 278.9 for buying and 280.8 for selling. Euro's buying rate remains stable at 301.25 and selling rate is 303.15.

British Pound rate is 354.75 for buying, and 358.25 for selling. UAE Dirham AED was at 76.4 and Saudi Riyal lowered to 73.65.

Currency Rates Today

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 278.9 280.8
Euro EUR 301.25 303.15
UK Pound Sterling GBP 354.75 358.25
U.A.E Dirham AED 76.4 77.15
Saudi Riyal SAR 73.65 74.37
Australian Dollar AUD 184.55 186.35
Bahrain Dinar BHD 741.15 749.15
Canadian Dollar CAD 203.75 205.75
China Yuan CNY 38.35 38.75
Danish Krone DKK 40.05 40.45
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.7 36.05
Indian Rupee INR 3.33 3.43
Japanese Yen JPY 1.91 1.99
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 908.25 917.35
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 58.95 59.75
New Zealand Dollar NZD 169.24 171.24
Norwegians Krone NOK 26.04 26.34
Omani Riyal OMR 722.87 730.89
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.39 77.09
Singapore Dollar SGD 202 204
Swedish Korona SEK 26.4 26.7
Swiss Franc CHF 309.05 311.55
Thai Bhat THB 7.5 7.65

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