5 more COVID-19 patients die in Bangladesh, 410 new patients

Staff Correspondent | Updated at 12:54am on February 26, 2021

COVID-19 killed five more people while 410 new cases were detected in the country in the past 24 hours ending at 8:00am on Thursday.

With the new figures, the country’s COVID-19 death toll reached 8,384 and the number of cases rose to 5,44,954, said the Directorate General of Health Services.

The government vaccinated 1.81 lakh more people against COVID-19 on Thursday.

The country has so far vaccinated 28,50,940 people since the nationwide mass vaccination drive began on February 7.

The DGHS in its daily COVID-19 infection update on Thursday said that 15,560 samples were tested across the country in the past 24 hours and 2.63 per cent of them were found positive for COVID-19.

Bangladesh confirmed the first cases of COVID-19 on March 8, 2020 and the first death on March 18 in the year.

The country is now in the 51th week of the outbreak.

The overall COVID-19 positivity rate is now 13.61 per cent and the overall fatality rate is 1.54 per cent.

The DGHS said that among the new deceased, two were from Dhaka division and three were from Chattogram division.

All of the deceased were above 60 years of age.

So far, 4,94,755 COVID-19 patients have recovered, including 957 in the past 24 hours. The recovery rate is now 90.79 per cent.

The DGHS in the vaccination update said that 1,81,439 people were vaccinated on Thursday, with 1,12,489 male and 68,950 female.

So far, 28,50,940 people were vaccinated including 18,56,265 male and 9,94,675 female.

Among the vaccinated people, 696 so far reported with side effects like fever, pain and redness at the injection site, including 27 on Thursday.

People are now taking the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, developed by Oxford-AstraZeneca and manufactured at the Serum Institute of India.

Bangladesh received 90 lakh doses of the vaccine so far, including 20 lakh on Tuesday from the manufacturer.

Earlier, Bangladesh got 50 lakh doses from the Serum Institute under the purchase deal of 3 crore doses of the vaccine by June.

Besides, the Indian government provided an additional 20 lakh doses as a gift to Bangladesh.

Bangladesh plans to inoculate 60 lakh people in the initial stage of the mass vaccination, covering mostly frontline workers.

Globally, the novel coronavirus has killed at least 24,98,003 people since the outbreak emerged in China in December 2019, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT on Thursday.

At least 11,25,12,890 cases of coronavirus have been registered. Of these, at least 6,90,52,600 are now considered recovered, reports Agence France-Presse.

On Wednesday, 11,141 new deaths and 4,32,248 new cases were recorded worldwide.

Based on latest reports, the countries with the most new deaths were the United States with 2,337 new deaths, followed by Brazil with 1,428 and Mexico with 1,006.

The United States is the worst-affected country with 5,05,899 deaths from 2,83,36,188 cases.

The World Health Organisation says people with long-term COVID symptoms should be made a ‘clear priority’ by health authorities, with its European branch saying sufferers need to be heard.

EU leaders, under pressure to speed up the vaccine rollout, meet via video as the bloc battles against stubborn second and third waves of the virus.

Some capitals are also pushing for a continent-wide vaccine passport.

China denies asking US diplomats to undergo anal swab tests for the virus after reports that State Department staff there had complained of being subjected to the intrusive test.

US relations with China chilled sharply under the Trump administration.

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte wants soldiers to be among the first to get vaccinated there.

His government is under pressure amid accusations that officials have bungled the procurement and delivery of jabs.

Finland is to close bars and restaurants for three weeks starting March 8 due to a rise in cases.

The Nordic country has had the fewest cases in Europe up to now, but infections are now rising.

Meanwhile, the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine has proven 94 per cent effective in a study involving 1.2 million people in Israel, the first peer-reviewed real world research confirming the power of mass immunisation campaigns to bring the pandemic to a close.

The paper, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine on Wednesday, also demonstrated there is likely a strong protective benefit against infection, a crucial element in breaking onward transmission.

‘The fact that the vaccines worked so well in the real world... really does suggest that if the nations of the world can find the will, we now have the means to end Covid-19 forever,’ said Ben Neuman, a virologist from Texas A&M University who was not involved in the research.

The experiment was carried out between December 20 2020 and February 1, 2021 — a period when a newer variant first identified in Britain was rampant in Israel, making the vaccine’s performance all the more impressive.