For the first time in six weeks, the daily rate of new cases of coronavirus has dropped to below 1,000, while the national positivity rate fell to 2.5 per cent, according to data from the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC).
In the last 24-hours, 961 new cases of coronavirus have been reported. It is the fifth day in a row that the national positivity rate remained below 5 per cent.
More than two-thirds of new cases were reported in Sindh (373 cases) and Punjab (302 cases). In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 132 new cases were reported; 97 new cases in Islamabad; 32 cases in Gilgit Baltistan; 15 cases in Azad Jammu and Kashmir; and 10 cases Balochistan.
The spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant of Covid-19 led many to fear Pakistan would face a damaging fifth wave, since the variant was first detected in Karachi in late December. In January, Pakistan reported the highest record of Covid-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, with 7,678 new cases reported in just one 24-hour period – the majority of these cases were in Sindh. At that time, the national positivity rate hovered around 13 per cent.
However, in February the rate of Covid-19 cases has decreased significantly. Vaccination efforts across the country have been largely successful. The NCOC aims to fully vaccination at least 72 per cent of the vaccine-eligible population by March, around 110 million people. To date, over 94 million eligible Pakistanis have been fully vaccinated.