Positivity rate highest since April 22
The health directorate yesterday reported that detection of new Covid-19 cases has increased by 27.2 percent this week.
With the rising trend in transmission, believed to be caused by the Delta variant, ill-prepared hospitals across the bordering districts in Khulna and Rajshahi divisions have been struggling with a surge in the number of patients.
In the past 24 hours till 8:00am yesterday, the positivity rate against 11,590 tests countrywide was 14.12 percent -- the highest in the last seven weeks.
Earlier on April 22, the positivity rate was 14.63 percent against 27,429 tests countrywide, according to the Directorate General of Health Services.
Experts said, the mainland can be hit anytime by the delta variant -- known as the Indian variant of novel coronavirus -- due to the lack of enforcement of health safety guidelines.
" ... hospitals in many parts of the country, including Dhaka, may be underprepared to deal with the delta variant. Because our entire focus is now only on the bordering districts," Abu Jamil Faisel, a member of the Epidemiology and Public Health Committee at the DGHS, told The Daily Star yesterday.
With yesterday's 16,37 new cases, the total number was 15,172 in the past week till yesterday -- up from 11,928 in the previous week (May 30- June 5).
Besides, the number of deaths has also increased by 7.14 percent this week, according to a DGHS press release.
With yesterday's 39 deaths, the total number was 270 this week while it was 252 in the previous week.
HOSPITALS ALONG BORDER UNPREPARED
Covid-19 transmission has been in an upward trend in Khulna, Satkhira, Rajshahi, Chapainawabganj, Dinajpur, Naogaon, Natore and Thakurgaon over the past several days.
Authorities of Khulna Medical College Hospital (KMCH) and Rajshahi Medical Hospital have had to stop admitting patients due to lack of space.
Our Correspondent from Khulna reported that the KMCH authority have been struggling due to the increasing number of Covid-19 patients since the beginning of this months.
As of yesterday afternoon, there were 131 Covd-19 patients under treatment against a 100-bed capacity. Besides, 13 patients were in ICU in the hospital.
During a visit to KMCH, our correspondent witnessed a queue of over a hundred people to give samples for Covid-19 test in front of the hospital.
Due to a shortage of beds in nearby districts, including Satkhira and Jashore, patients have continued rushing to KMCH.
Al Manum, 38, an auto rice mill manager of Satkhira's Itagacha area, was admitted to the Covid unit five days ago. However, he had tried to get admission to Satkhira Medical College. Due to lack of space, he came to KMCH.
Dr Mehedi Nawaz, vice principal of KMC and convener of the Corona Prevention Committee in Khulna district, told The Daily Star, "We are at a loss regarding how to handle the situation as patients from nearby districts are coming here every day."
He said they have sent a proposal to the health ministry to turn the Khulna Sadar Hospital into a Covid-19 unit.
In the last 24 hours, one Covid-19 positive patient and four with Covid-19 symptoms died in KMCH.
Against a total of 376 tests yesterday, the positivity rate was 34.93 percent in the division.
Among those who tested positive for Covid-19, 116 were from Khulna, 13 from Bagerhat, three from Satkhira, two from Jashore and one from Pirojpur.
To check transmission, Khulna district administration has imposed a fresh one-week long restriction on public transport movement from last night.
In Rajshahi Medical College Hospital, four people died of Covid-19 -- the lowest single-day death toll in a week – in the 24 hours till 8:00am yesterday, reports our correspondent from Rajshahi.
Of them, one was Covid positive, while the rest had symptoms of the infection, RMCH Deputy Director Dr Saiful Ferdous told The Daily Star.
The doctor said the person who died of the virus was a resident of Chapainawabganj, while the three others were from Rajshahi.
A total of 366 samples were tested at the hospital yesterday. Of them, 143 tested positive.
The positivity rate was 39.07 percent.
In total, 289 patients are undergoing treatment at the RMCH's coronavirus unit at the moment.
The ongoing restriction on movement in Rajshahi district has stepped into its second day yesterday.
Meanwhile, the district administration in Kushtia has enforced restriction on movement from Friday midnight, as three Covid-19 patients died. The positivity was 29.75 percent yesterday, reports our Kushtia correspondent.
The restriction will continue till June 18 mid-night, said a circular signed by Mohammad Saidul Islam, the deputy commissioner of Kushtia.
Meanwhile, 22 stranded Bangladeshis in India have returned to the country via Darshana immigration check post, raising the number of returnees to 778 in the last 25 days.
All of them were sent to a 14-day mandatory institutional quarantine.
Our correspondent from Natore reported that the district authorities have been struggling with the backlog of Covid-19 samples sent to the Rajshahi Medical College rt-PCR lab.
"We sent 400 samples to RMCH last time. But we have not received the test results yet," Dr Kazi Mizanur Rahman, civil surgeon of Natore district, told The Daily Star.
Our Correspondent from Thakurgaon also reported that four Covid-19 patients have died and 21 people tested positive in the district yesterday.
In Chapainawabganj, the positivity rate has come down to 11.26 percent, while two people died yesterday.