According to the statistics of the World Health Organisation (WHO), the patient detection rate is below zero per cent in 18 districts and 0.1 to 24 per cent in 10 districts of the country. Apart from this, the number of coronavirus patients is increasing alarmingly in the other 36 districts. The increase in the number of newly identified Covid patients was 25 to 100 per cent or more in these districts.
The Centre for Disease Control of the US has included Bangladesh in the list of the countries with highest risk of coronavirus transmission. The list was updated on 7 June. There are 61 countries altogether in this list, including India and Pakistan. The US government has instructed its citizens to administer both doses of Covid vaccine before travelling to any countries in this list.
The government of Bangladesh announced a countrywide lockdown on 5 April after the second wave of coronavirus pandemic hit the country. By mid-April coronavirus transmission had begun to subside. However, after Eid-ul Fitr, there has been an upward trend in the rate of coronavirus transmission since mid-May. The spread of the virus is comparatively higher in the border-lying districts. Despite imposing all out or partial lockdowns in some of these districts, the situation is not changing.
According to WHO, the increase in number of newly identified coronavirus patients was 100 per cent or more between 31 May and 6 June as compared to the previous week (24 to 30 May) in 15 districts. Eight among them are districts bordering India. Apart from this, in eight other districts, the increase in number of Covid patients was 75 to 99 per cent. Besides, the increase in the number of Covid patients was 100 per cent or more in Magura, Narail, Rajbari, Manikganj, Tangail, Pirojpur and Noakhali.
The border-lying districts where the increase of Covid patients was 100 per cent or more are – Panchagarh, Thakurgaon, Kurigram, Joypurhat, Rajshahi, Meherpur, Chuadanga and Khagrachhari. And the number was between 75 and 99 per cent in border-lying districts of Jashore, Jhenidah, Naogaon, Dinajpur, Lalmonirhat, Feni, Sherpur and Kushtia.
The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) fears that the situation could worsen if the lockdown and the government directives are lax. Nazmul Islam, one of the spokespersons of the DGHS, expressed this concern in an online bulletin on Wednesday. He said relaxation in any place in implementing the Covid related directives would not bring good results.
Although the spread of the virus has has stabilised to some extent in some border-lying districts due to lockdowns and restrictions, the infection is increasing in the surrounding districts. For example, the situation is getting worse in Naogaon and Rajshahi near Chapainawabganj.
As many as eight coronavirus patients and symptomatic people have died in the last 24 hours at Rajshahi Medical College. Four of them had coronavirus infection. According to the hospital sources, the detection rate as compared to the total number was 40.77 per cent.
The detection was 59.34 per cent in Satkhira on Wednesday. Hussain Safayat, civil surgeon of Satkhira, said it is not possible to curb the spread of the virus by treatment only. People are not conscious.
Coronavirus transmission is on the rise in Kushtia too. Speaking to Prothom Alo, Taposh Kumar Sarkar, resident medical officer of Kushtia General Hospital, said as many as four people have died in the last 24 hours in their hospital. This was the highest number of deaths in a day this year.
The Covid situation is worse in Khulna too. In the last eight days (1 to 8 June) the detection rate as compared to the total number of tests was 24.36 per cent. The number was 21.7 per cent in the previous eight days.
The DGHS said in its press release on Monday that the number of detected novel coronavirus cases rose to 817,819 as 2,537 more cases were reported, after testing 20,584 samples, including rapid antigen tests, in the last 24 hours. During that time 36 Covid-19 patients died, raising the total deaths in the country to 12,949. The rate of detection in the last 24 hours until 8:00 am was 12.33 per cent. The health directorate said the number of total recoveries stood at 757,569 as of Wednesday.
Mushtuq Husain, advisor to the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) told Prothom Alo that the number of newly identified Covid patients has been increasing for several days. Although the spread of the virus seems to be stabilised in some of the border-lying districts, the transmission is increasing in the districts nearby. For example, the coronavirus transmission is brought under control in Chapainawabganj while in Rajshahi, Naogaon and Natore it is increasing. Overall, the country's transmission rate is on the rise. If effective measures are not taken, the situation would worsen again.