Bangladesh on Thursday reported one more death from coronavirus and 112 more infections from the disease in the past 24 hours till 8:00am.
With the numbers, the death toll from COVID-19 rose to 21 and infections number to 330, health minister Zahid Maleque said while speaking in an online bulletin.
With the soaring number of COVID-19 patients, for the first time the number of infected patients topped 100 in a single day on Thursday. On Wednesday, the number of infected patients was 54 while it was 41 on Tuesday, 35 on Monday, 18 on Sunday and 9 on Saturday.
Bangladesh confirmed the first infection with coronavirus on March 8 and the first death on March 18. ‘We are getting more infected patients as we have widened our testing,’ said the health minister.
‘We are now getting information about the prevalence of COVID-19 patients in our country,’ he said. Directorate General of Health Services’ additional director general Sanya Tahmina said that 1097 people were tested – 618 in the capital - in the past 24 hours and 112 of them were found positive.
Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research director Meerjady Sabrina Flora said that among the new infected patients, 62 were identified in the capital and 13 in Narayanganj.
‘Many patients are being found in different districts and we found that they had travel history in Narayanganj,’ she said, describing Narayanganj as hotspot for COVID-19.
Meerjady said that 70 of the newly infected were males and 42 were females. Among them three are below 10 years of age, 25 between 21-30, 24 between 31-40, 23 between 51-60, 17 between 41-50, nine between 11-20 and 11 above 60 years of age.
The death of the new patient was in Dhaka and his age was above 60, she said.
As of Thursday, at least 135 suspected COVID-19 patients are now in isolation and 149 are in institutional quarantine.
Health minister Zahid Maleque requested people to stay home and undergo tests.
‘Stay home to keep you and your family safe and do tests to know whether you are infected,’ he said. The minister said that the government was preparing more hospital beds for COVID-19 patients.
He said the country has 550 ventilators and 380 others under procurement.
Currently, 112 ICU were dedicated for COVID-19 patients and 7693 isolation beds were dedicated for such patients, said DGHS additional director general Sanya.
Zahid Maleque said that preparation were on to install 4,600 new isolation beds in the capital, including at an under construction market of Dhaka North City Corporation.
He asked experts not to comment negative about the government’s measures but to advise them to improve those.
State minister for disaster management, Enamur Rahman, also general secretary of Bangladesh Private Medical Colleges Association, was connected with the online bulletin and he said that 69 private medical colleges and hospitals were open round the clock to provide treatment to all types of patients including the COVID-19 ones.
He said that many were in confusion that the private hospitals were now closed.
‘I’d like to assure the countrymen that we are beside you,’ he said.
Enamur made the announcement when many people were being denied treatment as the doctors and other healthcare providers fear the patients might have contracted COVID-19.
The association president Mubin Khan said that they would dedicate private medical college hospitals for treating COVID-19 patients if the health ministry wants.
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