COVID-19: Pakistan has a black market for plasma

Pakistan is gripped by chaos — the number of infected is growing, there are not enough beds, medicines,ventilators. Deals are being made all over the country — people buy blood plasma from sick patients in the hope of being cured. Families are turning to social media to find recovered patients with the right blood type.  The samples are being sold for up to $ 4,000. The transactions were witnessed by doctors at government hospitals in Islamabad and Lahore, OCCRP reports.

The steady increase in the incidence of coronavirus — more than 188 thousand infected, including 7 thousand doctors, lack of medicines and equipment put the health system of Pakistan on the verge of disaster.

According to doctors, there are illegal transactions between patients and intermediaries all over Pakistan — people buy the plasma of recovered patients to be cured of the coronavirus. The average price for it is 3 thousand pounds (approx. $3,7 thousand).

According to experts, the rate of spread of the virus in Pakistan is now one of the highest in the world — more than 5 thousand new cases per day. This growth was triggered by the early lifting of the quarantine-restrictions in the country were lifted on may 18.

Doctors believe that the authorities underestimated the danger of COVID-19. According to them, the country lacks vital medicines for coronavirus, including dexamethasone, as well as beds, oxygen cylinders and ventilators.

The situation has deteriorated so much that who has suggested that the government of Pakistan return to isolation. The authorities obeyed and imposed a quarantine in Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar, but only for a few days, as they fear an even greater decline in the already severely damaged economy.

Previously reported that Zimbabwe’s health Minister was released from custody on bail after being arrested the day before on corruption charges related to the illegal purchase of COVID-19 medical equipment