The government has ordered to run the public and private offices of the country with half workforce from Monday till 6 February in the context of rising Covid transmission.
The cabinet division issued a circular in this connection Sunday.
Bangladesh reported 14 more deaths and 10,906 new cases of Covid-19 in the last 24 hours till 8am Sunday.
Besides, the health officials recorded a 31.29% positivity rate after testing 34,854 samples across the country – the second highest positivity rate so far recorded in the Country.
Earlier on 24 July last year Bangladesh recorded the highest 32.55% positivity rate in a day.
According to the World Health Organisation, Covid-19 infections are considered to be under control if a country's detection rate remains below 5% for more than two consecutive weeks.
Amid the nationwide surge, Chattogram division reported a 38.64% positivity rate during the same period.
With the latest figures, the death toll reached 28,223 and the case tally increased to 16,85,136 in the country.
Omicron gradually becoming dominant variant: DGHS
According to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), the Omicron variant is gradually taking the place of the Delta variant in Bangladesh.
The Delta variant is still predominant in community-level infections but the Omicron variant is gradually taking its place, said DGHS spokesperson Prof Dr Nazmul Islam during the health bulletin on Sunday.
About the signs and symptoms of Omicron, he said that 73% of people infected with Omicron have runny nose, 68% of patients have headaches, 64% of patients are experiencing fatigue, 60% patients are sneezing, 60% patients have sore throat and 44% patients are experiencing coughing.
"We have to keep in mind that the symptoms [of Omicron] are similar to seasonal flu and influenza. Therefore, in any case, we should seek medical advice," said Dr Nazmul Islam.
"If we continue to disregard health guidelines, then the number of patients will increase even more. That will put additional pressure on the health system. We have the data. The number of patients in the hospital has increased a lot over the last three to four months and it is still increasing," he added.
"If we want to overcome this epidemic, we must follow the health guidelines," he stressed.
About the upcoming book fair, he said, "We would like to request those who are associated with the book fair to complete their vaccination before the fair begins."
He further recommended that anyone who is above 60 years or front-liners and plans to visit the book fair, should get their booster dose first.
"Everyone must wear a mask. No one can walk around the fair without a mask," he warned.
Office to run with half workforce
In the circular of the cabinet division signed by Saiful Islam, senior assistant secretary it was mentioned that all the public, private, semi-government and autonomous office should operate with half of their workforce following health guidelines. Other officials and staffs would stay at their own office and work virtually.
Regarding the works of the courts, the circular said the Supreme Court will issue necessary instructions.
Besides, the Bangladesh Bank and the financial institution division will issue instructions regarding the operation of the banks, insurance and other financial institutions.