September 4, 2020 Ahmad Raza

(NCOC) discussed the testing strategy for educational institutions.

ISLAMABAD: The National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) on Wednesday discussed the testing strategy for educational institutions ahead of the likely September 15 reopening date, so that timely detection of disease spread and pandemic hotspots can be ensured. The meeting comes as Pakistan — which had been reporting a decline in the death toll to single digits — after six days, reported 18 deaths for the first time.

While chairing the meeting, Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar said the sequence designed to open up educational institutions had been agreed by the Ministry of Education. However, the next major challenge was to enforce safety protocols and health guidelines in around 300,000 educational institutions across the country and all focus should be directed towards this.

The forum was apprised that a four-strand strategy was devised for testing in educational institutions. It was briefed that the strategy had been formed keeping in view 20 major high risk cities with 76% of the total COVID-19 cases reported in the country. It added that the students under this strategy would be randomly screened whereas screening of the teachers would be carried out on periodic basis.

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