Karachi launches door-to-door COVID-19 vaccination for women

Pakistan on Friday reported nearly 1,300 cases in a single
day, its highest tally in two months, with a positivity rate of 2.5%. Karachi’s
positivity rate rose to 10%, from 4.74% on Dec 31.

“We have found that a sizable population of housewives are
unvaccinated, and they socialise and attend weddings without face masks,” Qasim
Siraj Soomro, parliamentary secretary health of the Sindh provincial
government, told Reuters.

In contrast, the rate of vaccination among male family
members who go out to work is higher than the rate among women, he added.

The provincial government’s campaign will use female health
workers, who have long played an instrumental role in country-wide polio
vaccination campaigns in the South Asian nation.

“We plan to target clusters in urban areas and at later
stage in rural areas,” said the parliamentary secretary.

About 70 million people in Pakistan, or 32% of the
population, have had two vaccine doses.

The first case of the omicron variant was reported on Dec 13
in Karachi, and the federal government has acknowledged that a fifth pandemic
has started in the country, with Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad seeing most of
the cases.

The government has not yet announced new restrictions but
has urged people to follow precautionary measures.

The government has authorised booster doses for citizens
over the age of 30 from Monday. Children over the age of 12 are being offered
vaccinations at their schools.

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