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Medical staff members wearing protective gear take information from a resident sitting in a car for a coronavirus test at a drive-through screening and testing facility point in Karachi. (AFP)
Medical staff members wearing protective gear take information from a resident sitting in a car for a coronavirus test at a drive-through screening and testing facility point in Karachi. (AFP)

Pakistan opens its first drive-through Covid-19 testing facility

  • The main advantage of a drive-through testing facility, according to medical experts, is that it reduces the strain on hospitals and clinics which are currently under tremendous pressure the world over.

At a time when people around the world are being urged to stay at home and keep their cars firmly parked, several countries have opened drive-through testing facilities for people who may be showing symptoms of coronavirus disease. Pakistan too joined the list of countries when it opened its first such facility in Karachi recently.

(Also read: Coronavirus can drag Pakistan's shaky auto industry into depths of despair)

Dawn has reported that the drive-through facility was recently opened in Karachi's Jahangir Kothari Parade area of Clifton. People who may have one or several symptoms that could potentially be of coronavirus, officially referred to as Covid-19, are being asked to get in their cars, drive to the facility, perform the swab tests without even getting out of the their vehicles, submit these and drive away.

A medical staff member wearing protective gear takes a coronavirus sample from a resident sitting in a car, in Karachi.
A medical staff member wearing protective gear takes a coronavirus sample from a resident sitting in a car, in Karachi. (AFP)

The main advantage of a drive-through testing facility, according to medical experts, is that it reduces the strain on hospitals and clinics which are currently under tremendous pressure the world over. It also poses limited risk as a person does not have to get out of his or her vehicle and maintains social distancing.

While many cities in the US have now set up drive-through testing facilities, the one in Karachi is open for anyone who has either recently returned from abroad or is showing certain pre-defined symptoms.

Pakistan has so far refrained from imposing a country-wide lockdown even though the country's PM Imran Khan faces mounting criticism for his reluctance to do so. Positive cases of coronavirus have crossed 3,200 with 48 deaths reported at the time of publishing this report.

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