One more died of COVID-19 and three more people were identified with the novel coronavirus infection in Bangladesh, health minister Zahid Maleque said Wednesday.
Following the new deaths, so far six people died of COVID-19 in the country. The total infected rose to 54 with three new confirmed cases.
Bangladesh on March 8 confirmed the first infections while the first death was reported on March 18.
The IEDCR was repeatedly advising people not to go to the hospitals or IEDCR in person but to call its call centres following which they would collect the samples from the patients’ homes.
‘Going to the test centres in person will only increase the possibility of spreading the disease among others if someone has been infected with COVID-19,’ said IEDCR director Meerjady.
Speaking at an online news conference by the Management Information System director of Directorate General of Health Services, the health minister said there was no let-up in people turning up to the test centres though the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research advised people repeatedly not to go to the hospital or IEDCR in person.
In the past four days, about 18 people died with symptoms of COVID-19, but their samples were collected after their deaths.
When asked about how many deceased were tested as the IEDCR on Tuesday said all of them were found negative for COVID-19, Management Information System director Habibur Rahman could not provide a specific number but said that all the reported cases in newspapers were tested.
MIS director Habibur Rahman said at the press conference that over 9.76 lakh people called to the health call centres for seeking services for COVID-19.
But, he said so far 1,759 people were tested by the IEDCR and other test facilities.
Asked about the capacity of daily testing by the government, he said, ‘Judging the capacity by numbers was not necessary. It is more important that the government increases its capacity of testing COVID-19 patients.’
In the past three days, about 15 people died with symptoms of COVID-19, but their samples were collected after their deaths.
On Wednesday and Tuesday night, three more people died with symptoms of coronavirus in Satkhira, Narail and Feni.
New Age correspondent in Feni reported that a man named Ripon, 30, of village Paschim Chanua in sadar upazila, died at home on Wednesday with symptoms of coronavirus as he was advised to stay home by the Feni General Hospital.
Feni civil surgeon Sajjad Hossain said that the samples were collected from his body for testing.
In Satkhira, a woman, Rashida Khatun, 25, wife of Sirajul Islam of Dakkhin Sripur village, died from fever and cold-related diseases at Bandokati village in Kaliganj upazila early Wednesday, reported UNB.
Sheikh Riazuddin, Bishnupur union parishad chairman, said Rashida had been suffering from cold-related diseases and fever from March 26.
In Narail, a young man, Shawkat Ali, 25, son of Omar Ali of Narail municipality area, who had been suffering from fever and cold, died at Sadar Hospital on Tuesday night, reports UNB.
Dr Touhidul Islam, duty doctor at the hospital, said Shawkat had been suffering from fever and cold for the last 3-4 days.
On Tuesday night, family members brought him to the hospital around 8:30pm, he said, adding that he died 15 minutes later around 8:45pm.
Institute of Public Health virologist Mahbuba Jamil, who also attended the online news conference, said the novel coronavirus remains active for two hours in the body after death.
Health minister Zahid Maleque said that the risks were not yet over and everyone should stay home and abide by the government’s directives to maintain social distancing.
‘Our situation is still good, but that doesn’t mean [that we are risk free],’ he said, adding that venturing out would push us towards a calamity.
Mentioning that 26 infected people already recovered from their infections, the minister said the government was increasing the quality of healthcare services for the COVID-19 patients.
He said the hospitals were being prepared with ventilators for COVID-19 patients and 500 of them would be installed at different hospitals.
He said that a fourth test centre in Dhaka was set up at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University and the medical college hospitals in Mymensingh, Rajshahi and Rangpur would start testing soon.
Besides, test centre would be installed within two days at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital and other medical college hospitals in divisions would be equipped with the COVID-19 testing facilities.
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