Pakistan will ban access to the public sector, education, shopping malls and air travel for those who have not been vaccinated.
In particular, Pakistan will ban air travel for those who do not have a COVID-19 vaccination certificate from August 1 and will require all public sector workers to be vaccinated by August 31, the government announced today, along with a number of other restrictions.
As of August 1, those who have not been vaccinated will no longer be able to enter government offices, schools, restaurants and shopping malls, said Assad Umar, head of the Center for National Administration and Operations (NCOC), an army-run body monitors the pandemic response at a joint news conference with the Islamabad health minister.
Teachers and students over the age of 18, public transport and retail workers are also required to be vaccinated by the end of August, they said.
Pakistan has seen the number of coronavirus infections skyrocket, with the Delta variant predominating, and its inadequate health facilities under extreme pressure.
The national positivity rate for COVID-19 is 7,53%, according to the NCOC. The percentage in the southern port city of Karachi has reached 23% in recent weeks.
"If you are not vaccinated, you cannot go to teaching in schools and colleges from August 1," Umar said. "We cannot endanger the lives of our children simply because you are not ready to get the vaccine."
He also stressed that the goal is to reach one million doses a day.
According to the NCDC, more than 27,8 million people have received at least one dose of the vaccine, while only 5,9 million have been fully vaccinated in a population of 220 million.
He said Pakistan had recorded 4.497 new infections and 76 deaths in the last 24 hours, with more than 3.000 people in critical condition. So far, 23.209 people have died from COVID-19 in Pakistan.