Bangladesh witnessed an increase in Covid-19 deaths as 231 more people died of the virus in the last 24 hours till 8am Sunday.
The single-day death toll fell to 218 on Saturday as the country has been reporting over 200 deaths per day for the last eight days.
The number of daily cases also saw a sharp rise on Sunday with 14,844 more people were diagnosed with the virus in the 24 hours period.
After reporting over 10,000 confirmed cases since 25 July, the number dropped to 9,369 a day ago.
Meanwhile, the positivity rate dropped to 29.97%, down from 30.24% a day ago while the death rate remained unchanged at 1.66%.
With the latest additions, the death toll increased to 20,916 and the case tally climbed to 12,64,328 in the country.
The health authorities enhanced testing as 49,529 samples were tested in 691 labs across the country in a span of 24 hours. The number was 30,980 the previous day.
Of the deceased, Dhaka division reported the highest 77 deaths followed by 53 in Chattogra, 44 in Khulna, 18 in Rangpur, 13 in Rajshahi, 11 in Mymensingh, nine in Sylhet, and six in Barishal division.
Reopening RMG factories will increase infections: Health Minister
The Covid-19 infection will increase as RMG factories reopened on Sunday amid strict lockdown restrictions, said Health Minister Zahid Maleque.
"People from different parts of the country have joined their workplaces, but they did not follow the hygiene rules for which infection will increase," said the minister while talking to the media after attending the inaugural function of the first year MBBS class (2020-21) at the BCPS auditorium in Mohakhali.
He noted that the government needs to consider all aspects before making a decision.
"The infection rate is less in the northern part of the country and stable in the middle part. It is increasing in the eastern region but there is no scope to increase the number of hospital beds.
"One crore shots of Covid-19 vaccine will be administered among people in a festive environment across the country from 7-14 August.
"The weeklong inoculation campaign will be held everywhere from the union and ward levels to the capital, starting from 7 August. Older people will be given priority to get the shots during the vaccination campaign.
"To bring many more people under the vaccination scheme, people will be given the jabs based on their National Identity Cards or in some cases a simpler process," said the health minister.
Vaccine centres will be removed from hospitals: DGHS
The coronavirus vaccination centres will be shifted from the hospitals soon, said Director General of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) Abul Basar Mohammad Khurshid Alam on Sunday.
"Earlier, we were worried about whether the side effects of vaccination would require immediate hospital support. But, we vaccinated so many people in the last few months, and no major accident occurred," he said, adding, "The normal functioning of every hospital is being disrupted because of the vaccination centres. The number of vaccination centres will increase as soon as those are shifted outside the hospitals, and we will be able to bring more people under vaccination."
Professor Khurshid Alam said he would like to transfer the vaccination centres from hospitals to schools, colleges, community health clinics in rural areas and medical colleges in Dhaka. College campuses are spacious, and there are no students. We want to set up multiple booths there for vaccination.
The second dose of AstraZeneca will start in Dhaka from Monday and from 7 August across the country, said Md Shamsul Haque, member secretary of Vaccine Development Committee of the DGHS.