December 2, 2023, 11:44 am
With an increase in testing, the number of identified COVID-19 patients is on a steady increase. But no one can estimate where the contagion, the number of identified patients and deaths will end. Every day increasing numbers of patients are being admitted to the hospitals.
The government’s Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) on Friday said that 94 new persons have tested positive for COVID-19 and six had died. The day before, 112 had tested positive and one had died. This had brought the total number of identified patients up to 424 and deaths at 27.
The country had entered the fourth stage of the coronavirus infection and it is spreading rapidly from person to person. In the capital city, the infection has spread to 60 areas and 233 persons have tested positive. The virus has spread to 22 districts outside of Dhaka, with 191 coronavirus patients being identified so far.
No one can estimate when this pandemic will end. Amid this uncertainty, the government declared a general holiday and has extended it further, has locked down certain areas and taken a number of other measures. Experts, however, said that all these measures must be enforced even more strictly.
The laboratories have the capacity to run 4000 tests a day. Yesterday 1,184 tests were conducted and 94 persons tested positive. On the previous day, 905 tests were run and 112 tested positive. If these labs carried out tests to the full capacity, the number of identified patients would more than double.
Former director general of the health directorate FMA Fayez, speaking to Prothom Alo, said that the priority now must be given to quarantine, social distancing and conduct testing of those who have come into contact with coronavirus infected patients. Those identified through contact testing should be kept in quarantine or isolation. If these measures are stringently enforced, the infection rate can be kept lower. There will be less pressure on the hospitals.
COVID-19 patients in the capital city are being treated at the Kuwait-Bangladesh Friendship Government Hospital and the Kurmitola General Hospital. There are 700 beds in total in these two hospitals.
Treatment had initially been carried out at the Kuwait-Bangladesh Friendship Government Hospital. The hospital has 200 beds, including 26 ICU beds. With the increase of patients, the Kurmitola General Hospital is also being used. It has 500 beds including 22 for the ICU. There were about 50 COVID-19 patients in one ward of this hospital, according to sources.
There are about 5 or 6 coronavirus patients at the Dhaka Mahanagar Hospital too.