Balkh's public health caretaker Nizamuddin Jalil on Sunday voiced concern at the increase in the number of positive coronavirus cases in the province.
Statistics from Balkh's public health department show that 366 out of 449 people tested over the past week are positive for COVID-19.
Over the past week, ten people died of COVID-19 diseases in Balkh and 17 others recovered in the province.
“We are moving towards the peak of the virus; the number of applicants to be tested for the virus has increased dramatically," said Balkh Public Health caretaker Nizamuddin Jalil.
In answer to complaints of residents of Mazar-e-Sharif, Jalil said: "We collect up to 150 samples a day. At the same time, people from neighboring provinces also come to be tested so that is why some delay occurs in announcing the results.”
A number of people who have come to the coronavirus lab in Mazar-e-Sharif say they sometimes wait for hours to give samples for the test.
“We have been referred here and it is a good thing problems are being addressed. Now it is almost a half-hour that I am waiting here in the hospital,” said Khan Zada, a resident of Mazar-e-Sharif.
“I have been sick for a week, I have some headaches and a dry cough, no other pain in my body and no other problems-- just a headache,” said Roya, another resident.
A man who did not want to be named who works in an office of an international organization said he came to be tested as a precaution:
“There are no symptoms, but I feel that I have to be tested once, because if I am infected with the virus so I do not infect my colleagues," said the man.
“On a daily basis, the number of patients has increased, and the number of cases has also risen,” said Mujebul Rahman Jalil, a doctor working at a COVID-19 testing center in Mazar-e-Sharif city.
“We need a few things to do daily for sampling, including VTN, which is sent to us by the Health Ministry," said Faramarz Rastgar, a doctor at the center.
Based on the statistics of Balkh's public health department so far, 1,375 positive cases of COVID-19 were identified in the province since the registration of the first COVID-19 case was registered in Balkh back in December this year.
Officials at the Balkh COVID-19 hospital say that out of the 1,375 people who are known to be infected with the virus, 1,262 of them are living in home isolation.
“What hurts us is that, unfortunately, we see those patients that we told to stay in home quarantine are out in the community,” said Abdul Latif Qarizada, the environmental health director at Balkh's public health department.
Balkh's public health department says 41 people have died of COVID-19 in the past three months and another 54 have recovered, and if the country's citizens do not follow health guidelines, this number will increase even more.