Testing for Covid-19 at Narayanganj 300-Bed Hospital in Khanpur – a hotspot for coronavirus infections – remains suspended for the past three days due to a shortage of kits.
As the number of Covid-19 patients in the district kept increasing day by day, the government set up a PCR lab at the hospital on May 6 to provide a testing facility in Narayanganj.
However, the recent shortage of testing kits is forcing hundreds of patients with Covid-19 symptoms to return home without any tests, adding to their suffering.
Asad Mia, a resident of Khanupur, said amid the increasing horror of Covid-19 in Narayanganj, such a crisis is disastrous. He then demanded that more testing kits be delivered to this hospital as quickly as possible.
Soleiman, a resident of the Jalkuri area of Siddhirganj with Covid-19 symptoms, said he came to Khanpur Hospital to get tested, but they did not take his sample because of the kit shortage.
Speaking to The Business Standard, the hospital's Resident Doctor Samsuddoha Sanchay said, "The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) in Dhaka has been contacted for more kits. However, I heard that the kits we had been using are no longer available in Bangladesh."
"The DGHS said the kits are supposed to arrive in a flight tonight, and we are hoping to get those by Sunday."
Narayanganj district Civil Surgeon Dr Imtiaz Ahmed said, "We have contacted the DGHS, and they said the kit will be delivered to the 300-Bed Hospital in Khanpur as soon as possible."
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner Md Jasim Uddin said, "There is currently a crisis for the colour kits used in PCR labs. However, just because there is a shortage of kits, the sample collection process must not be suspended under any circumstances.
"The authorities, as well as the doctors of the Narayanganj 300-Bed Hospital, have been directed to collect samples and get the testing done from Dhaka just like before."
In the past 81 days, at least 100 coronavirus patients have died in Narayanganj, and 4,530 became infected. Thousands of other people are currently under home quarantine with coronavirus-like symptoms.