Medical &Health

Covid-19: Bangladesh reports record 112 daily deaths

Bangladesh again broke all previous records of Covid-19 deaths recording 112 fatalities in a 24-hour period until Monday morning.

The country registered over 100 deaths for the fourth consecutive day.

The latest fatalities pushed up the death tally to 10,497 with a mortality rate of 1.45 percent, according to a handout from the Directorate General of Health Services.

Besides, 4,271 new cases were reported during the period after testing 24,152 samples. The infection rate was 17.68 percent, down from 19.06 percent on Sunday.

On Sunday, 19,404 samples were tested. The number was 34,630 on April 7 when the country recorded its highest single-day cases of 7,626.

Bangladesh reported its first coronavirus cases on March 8, 2020, and the first death on March 18 that year.

Covid-19: Bangladesh reports record 112 daily deaths

The authorities have so far confirmed 723,221 cases. Among them, 621,300 people - 85.91 percent of all patients – have recovered.

The virus claimed 568 lives in January this year, 281 in February and 638 in March.

The country is passing through a ‘strict’ lockdown at the moment but the people are still indifferent towards health guidelines and safety rules. People are going out of their homes, roaming the streets and gathering in tea stalls for chattering.

The government has decided to extend the ongoing lockdown by another week from April 22.

Cause of concern

Experts have raised concerns about the spread of more contagious and deadlier variants of the virus.

Research by the icddr,b has found that the South African variant accounted for 81 percent of the positive cases in Dhaka since the third week of March this year.

That’s not good news for Bangladesh because the country has managed to procure only the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine which offers as little as 10 percent protection against the South African variant, researchers suggested.

Bangladesh inked an agreement with the Serum Institute of India Pvt Ltd for 30 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

A countrywide inoculation drive was launched on Feb 7.

Covid-19: Bangladesh reports record 112 daily deaths

So far, 57,14,090 people have received the first dose and 13,66,609 have got their second jab, according to official figures.

There are growing calls for speeding up the vaccination programme as hospitals are swamped with patients.

Meanwhile, Bangladesh's vaccine supplier India has shifted from being a mass vaccine exporter to a major importer after the country saw a record number of daily cases.

Although Bangladesh is yet to receive its March consignment of 5 million doses, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen said they will arrive as promised by India.

Hospitals nearing limits

Hospitals are now struggling to accommodate the increasing number of patients and are running low on beds and oxygen.

There are 11,706 general beds for Covid-19 patients and 5,717 of them are currently occupied.

Overall, there are 940 ICU beds across the country and only 206 are available, the DGHS said.

The government is increasing the number of dedicated hospitals and beds.

A 1,000-bed Covid-19 hospital at Dhaka North City Corporation's Mohakhali market was opened on Sunday.

Source: United News of Bangladesh