The Covid-19 pandemic in Bangladesh has reached yet another deadly high with a record 247 deaths and15,192 people testing positive for Sars Cov-2 in the last 24 hours up until 8am, Monday, 26 July, 2021.
The sharp surge in deaths and infections was recorded despite the country being on a strict lockdown following the end of the three-day Eid holidays.
Health officials tested a record 50,952 samples across the country confirming a 29.82% positivity rate in the same time frame.
Experts say, Covid-19 deaths and infections will increase in the country due to increased movement of people during Eid-ul-Adha. There is no alternative to improving hospital management and isolating Covid patients to reduce deaths and infections, and the situation can get worse.
Prof Be-Nazir Ahmed, former director, Communicable Disease Control at the Directorate of Health, told the Business Standard (TBS), "This situation of infection-death was inevitable. In the last lockdown, infections did not decrease, then there was a super spread of the virus with easing of the lockdown as people thronged to cattle markets and their villages for Eid.
For these reasons, infections and deaths may further increase in the future. The actual death toll is much higher than reported by the DGHS as village people do not have Covid tests. So many people are dying Covid positive, but remain outside the list of infected cases and reported deaths.
Prof Be-Nazir Ahmed, said there is no alternative to isolation to reduce infections and deaths. If 50% of positively infected patients can be isolated for 14 days, the infection will not spread and deaths will reduce. It is necessary to control the infection through strict wearing of masks and isolation-quarantine, as it is not possible for Bangladesh to reduce the infection through lockdown. Otherwise, the country's situation is likely to be as in India.
With the latest additions, the death toll reached 19,521 and the case tally climbed to 11,79,827 in the country, according to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).
Dr M Mushtuq Husain, Advisor IEDCR, said infection cases were expected to rise seven days after Eid. But within four days we are already seeing a record number of deaths and infection cases. Infections and deaths may rise further due to random and reckless movement in cattle markets and people returning to and from their villages for Eid.
Dr M Mushtuq Husain said if you want to reduce the death rate, you have to follow up on those who have tested positive and strictly ensure they stay at home in isolation. Also, isolation centers have to be set up for Covid patients with mild symptoms as well.
The government as well as the community should come forward here to set up isolation centers and motivate positive patients to stay isolated there. Otherwise, the situation will go out of control. If patients with mild symptoms become critical patients, overwhelmed hospitals will not be able to treat them, he added.
According to a division-wise analysis, Chattogram saw a steep rise to 61 deaths from 40 deaths a day before. However, Dhaka recorded the highest, 72 deaths, followed by Chattogram. 46 people died in Khulna, 21 in Rajshahi, 16 in Rangpur, 14 in Sylhet, 12 in Barishal, and five died in Mymensingh division.
With the surge in deaths, the casualties among women also grew with 106 having died of the virus on Monday against a male death toll of 141.
The total number of recoveries crossed the 1 million mark on Monday with the highest ever number of 11,052 patients overcoming the virus in the preceding 24 hours.
Covid-19 infections and deaths are on the rise as all medical services and prevention measures are Dhaka-centric. Local intervention is essential to prevent infections and deaths, said Professor Nazrul Islam, noted virologist and a member of the National Technical Advisory Committee on Covid-19.