Medical &Health

Global Covid-19 cases cross 150 million

With new variants of Covid-19 spreading rapidly, the global Covid-19 caseload on Friday crossed the grim milestone of 150 million.

According to Johns Hopkins University (JHU), the total case count and fatalities now stand at 150,102,206 and 3,161,37, respectively.

The US, the world's worst-hit country in terms of cases and deaths, have recorded 32,283,801 cases with 575,070 fatalities to date, as per the JHU data.

Neighbouring India’s total Covid cases have now crossed the 18-million mark. The country’s caseload and death toll stand at 18, 376,524 and 204,832, respectively, as of Friday morning.

India had thought the worst was over when cases dropped in September. But infections began increasing in February, and on Thursday, 379,257 new confirmed cases, a global record, pushed the country’s total past 18.3 million, second only to the U.S.

India has set a daily global record for seven of the past eight days, with a seven-day moving average of nearly 350,000 infections. Daily deaths have nearly tripled in the past three weeks, reflecting the intensity of the latest surge. And the country’s already teetering health system is under immense strain, prompting multiple allies to send help, reports AP.

Brazil on Thursday registered 3,074 more deaths from Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, raising the national count to 401,186, the world's second-highest corona death toll after the US, the Ministry of Health said.

The ministry said that tests detected 69,076 new Covid-19 cases, taking its nationwide tally to 14,590,678.

April has been the month with the most deaths since the outbreak of the pandemic in the Latin American nation, with about 73,074 fatalities having been reported to date, compared with 66,000 deaths for March.

Situation in Bangladesh

Bangladesh on Thursday recorded 88 more coronavirus-related deaths and 2,341 new cases as the country struggles to stop the deadly virus spread.

The daily infection rate dropped to 9.39 percent from Wednesday’s 10.48 percent but the mortality rate rose to 1.50 percent. However, the infection rate in the country came down below 10 percent after over a month.

As of Thursday, 756,955 cases and 11,393 deaths have been recorded, the Directorate General of Health Services said in a handout.

The number of recoveries now stands at 677,101 (89.45 %) according to the directorate.

Bangladesh reported its first coronavirus cases on March 8 last year and the first death on the 18th of that month.

Lockdown extended

The disturbing surge in Covid cases prompted the government to go for a lockdown from early April. Having failed to achieve the intended result, it imposed a complete lockdown from April 11 and extended it to April 28.

On Wednesday, the government issued a circular extending the lockdown till May 5, as there is no improvement in the Covid-19 situation.

However, shops and shopping malls will remain open from 10am to 8pm during the extended period, he said.

Vaccination

Bangladesh launched a vaccination drive on February 7 with Oxford-AstraZeneca doses it acquired from the Serum Institute of India.

Bangladesh signed an agreement with Serum for 30 million doses. But a record number of cases in India has made the delivery of the doses uncertain.

However, BDGHS chief Prof ABM Khurshid Alam has assured citizens that Bangladesh will get 2.1 million doses of the vaccine by the first week of May.

Moreover, the government on Thursday approved the emergency use of Sinopharm, a Chinese Covid-19 vaccine. It approved the emergency use of Sputnik V vaccine of Russia a day earlier.

Source: United News of Bangladesh