Enamul Hafiz Latifee reports,
Bangladesh on Tuesday, 21 April 2020 reported 9 more deaths from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and 434 fresh positive cases overnight.
“Nine more COVID-19 patients died in the last 24 hours, raising the death toll from the pandemic to 110,” Additional Director General (administration) of DGHS Prof Nasima Sultana told a virtual media briefing at the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) in the city.
She said the total number of the COVID-19 cases in the country has surged to 3,382 as 434 more people tested positive for the lethal virus during the period.
Bangladesh confirmed the first coronavirus death in the country on 18 March 2020, ten days after detection of its first COVID-19 positive cases.
According to the DGHS COVID-19 infection tally, Bangladesh is witnessing sharp rise of coronavirus cases since 06 April 2020 as 3,294 people tested positive for the super contagious disease in the last 16 days, while 88 cases were recorded from 08 March 2020.
Nasima said a total of 29,578 samples have so far been tested since the detection of first COVID-19 cases in the country, adding: “We tested the highest number of 2,974 samples in the past 24 hours.”
The health official informed that at present, there are 21 labs in the country for testing samples of COVID-19.
Among the nine fatalities, three are in their 60s, three in their 50s and three in their 40s, she said, adding five of them are male and four female.
She said the total number of recovered patients has now stood at 87 as two patients were cured from the disease over the past 24 hours.
Nasima said COVID-19 cases were found in nearly 50 districts meaning that almost all regions of the country are risky for the fatal disease.
The health official said coronavirus positive cases have sharply increased in Gazipur, Mymensingh, Munshiganj, Chattogram, Narsingdi and Keraniganj.
“Chapainawabganj has been included freshly in the list of COVID-19 infection-prone districts,” she added.
Nasima dubbed Dhaka and Narayanganj COVID-19 as “hotspots” as the maximum number of cases were detected in the two cities.
“Gazipur has been identified as a new hotspot for coronavirus as a large number of positive were found there,” she said.
In order to stem the community transmissions of COVID-19, the health official urged the law enforcement agencies and organizations concerned to take strict measures to make the nationwide shutdown more effective.
Analyzing the infected history of COVID-19 cases, Nasima said rampant movements of coronavirus patients are mainly responsible for being infected with the virus.
Align with Professor Nasima’s concern, citizens are showing the concern of containing the virus through maintaining partial lockdown and staying home.
বাসার বারান্দা থেকে রাস্তা যতোটুকু দেখা যাচ্ছে, তাতে দেখছি, সেকেন্ডে কম করে হলেও ৩-৪টি রিকশা আর ১-২টি গাড়ি যাচ্ছে,…
She called upon all to stay at home alongside following hygienic practices including washing hands with soap and wearing masks to contain COVID-19.
Nasima said 1,60,806 people were kept at both home and institutional quarantine and over 83,802 people were released from quarantine, while the number of people who currently remain in quarantine is 77,004.
She said a total of 488 institutions have been prepared across the country for keeping over 26,000 people in quarantine, adding 765 people have now been kept in isolation.
Terming PPE as a very “essential protective gear” for medical professionals, the health official said 8,000 PPE are needed every day for sample collection of COVID-19-linked cases as each sample collection requires four PPE.
“All health organizations and hospitals should properly examine the standard of PPE to ensure safety of healthcare professionals,” she said.
Nasima said as part of taking preventative measures to stop imported cases of COVID-19, the authorities of all gateways, including airports, land ports and waterways, are continuing screening of all foreign returnees.
She said during the distribution of personal protective equipment (PPE), they are giving priority to COVID hospitals, ICU doctors, PCR lab technicians, port screening authorities and field level sample collection workers.
Nasima said the government has collected 1,498,150 PPE so far, of which 1,139,079 were distributed and 359,271 are in stock.
The health official said every day the government is collecting nearly one lakh PPE and of those, 60,000 to 70000 PPE are being distributed among healthcare providers. “By this month, the number of procurement of PPE will reach 20 lakh,” she informed.
Referring to the WHO’s instructions, the IEDCR earlier said the mild-infected patients should take treatment from their homes and they must stay at home isolation.
In such cases, family members have to maintain safe distancing from the patients, it added .
The IEDCR also advised the COVID-19 positive patients with mild symptoms not to visit hospital or get admitted, which will eventually reduce pressure on hospitals creating a scope for providing treatment of critical cases.
The DGHS sources said in case of critical COVID-19 patients, special facilities including oxygen, ICU and dialysis units are needed in hospitals. At present, the country has 192 ICUs and 40 dialysis units, they added.
They said till today, nearly 30 lakh people received healthcare services from hotline mobile numbers and health web portals as the government formed a group of medical professionals to provide emergency health services.