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Imminent oxygen shortage unnerves Pakistan

09 May 2021, 17:37 GMT+10

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa [Pakistan], May 9 (ANI): As the COVID-19 cases continue to explode in Pakistan due to the third wave of the virus, it is being projected that some part of the country could soon face a shortage of medical oxygen if conditions did not improve by the end of the holy month of Ramzan.

With the sharp increase in infections in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, all of a sudden the demand has shot up and has become much higher than the northwestern province's production capacity, The Express Tribune reported.

This comes as Pakistan reported 3,785 new infections and 118 deaths on Sunday, taking the country's total count to 858,026 cases. So far, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has reported 123,842 COVID-19 cases.

After the recent increase in Covid-19 cases in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, eight major hospitals are said to have immediately reported an 83 per cent increase in demand for oxygen.

"We are producing 120m3/hour of oxygen right now but even if we could bump up our capacity to 300m3/h, we would still be falling short--the demand is much higher than usual, specifically for hospitals," informed Khalid Afridi, who runs an oxygen production facility in Peshawar.

The Tribune report said that in spite of an increase in demand, government officials maintain that the situation is still well under control, with enough oxygen for rainy days.

On Saturday, Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar had warned the citizens saying that that the "danger is higher than ever and knocking at our doors." (ANI)

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