Health officials have urged more rigorous Covid-19 and dengue testing as the country grapples with tackling a rising number of fever patients.
There are patients infected with both Covid-19 and dengue, they said, adding that it is important for patients to be tested for the two diseases as fever is a common symptom for both.
Tests are a must to confirm disease and provide appropriate treatments, or the country risks a spiral of infections, doctors warned.
According to data released by the Directorate General of Health Services, 40 dengue patients were hospitalised across the country in the last 24 hours till Wednesday.
In the meantime, the country recorded 2,241 Covid-19 cases—highest in four months—with a positivity rate of 15.47%. No death from the virus was reported on the day.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's personal physician, Prof Dr ABM Abdullah, told The Business Standard (TBS), "Anyone suffering from fever, colds, coughs, body aches, loss of appetite and smell must be tested [for both Covid and dengue]. Especially, patients with kidney, liver, heart, stroke complications cannot afford to dilly-dally with testing."
He recommended patients suffering from fever and cough take medicines appropriate for the symptoms and to avoid taking any antibiotics without consulting a physician.
Patients with a cough should use warm water to gargle and drink, and should eat fruits, vegetables and protein-rich foods.
Dr Forhad Uddin Hasan Chowdhury, medicine and infectious diseases specialist at Dhaka Medical College Hospital, told TBS that people in urban areas should prioritise getting tested for both dengue and Covid.
"Tests are important to diagnose disease and prevent diseases from spreading to the community," he said.
He urged people to get tested, saying there are also people with fever and a cough suffering from viral diseases other than dengue and coronavirus.