Health Desk – 29 Mar, 2021: As the positivity rate jumped to 17.69 percent against 22,136 tests in 24 hours ending at 8:00am yesterday, there is no alternative to enforce transmission control activities immediately, experts have said.
In the previous day, the positivity rate was 14.90 percent.
The Directorate General of Health Services yesterday reported 3,908 new cases — the highest single-day record of cases in the last nine months.
On July 2 last year, 4,019 new cases were detected in the country.
With the latest count, the total number of confirmed cases rose to 5,95,714.
In the past 24 hours, 35 Covid-19 patients died in the country.
The death toll caused by the highly contagious virus has risen to 8,904 in the country since the first death was reported on March 18 last year.
The novel coronavirus infection declined to its lowest throughout January and February. It had its peak in June and July last year.
The transmission, however, started rising again from the second week of this month.
Experts said the actual positivity rate is higher than the reported rate every day.
For the last 10 days till Saturday, samples of over 500 members of the law enforcement agencies, who were deployed to ensure security on the occasions of golden jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence and Mujib Borsho, were tested as part of regular screening.
“Today [yesterday], the positivity rate increased as tests of those members of the law enforcement agencies stopped yesterday. Tomorrow the positivity rate will be higher as more such members of the law enforcement agencies will not be tested,” Mushtuq Hussain, consultant of the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research, said yesterday.
He said the detection of positive cases is higher as many samples are being tested every day simply for screening purposes.
“A good number of outgoing passengers are being tested simply to get Covid-19 negative certificates. If we exclude these sorts of testing, the rate is definitely higher,” Mushtuq said.
In the last 24 hours, 2,019 Covid-19 patients recovered from their illnesses, raising the recoveries to 5,35,941.
The recovery rate was around 90 percent.
“TAKE STRICT MEASURES”
While the transmission has been on the rise since the second week of this month, the government’s efforts to check virus transmission and ensure treatment are still inadequate, an expert said.
The government has not been able to strictly enforce the health safety rules, a key instrument in the fight against virus transmission.
A large section of the population is still reluctant to wear masks though it is mandatory to use those in public places.
“There is no strict measures yet. If the government starts enforcing health safety guidelines today, it will take two weeks to decrease the infection rate. If not, the transmission will continue to rise and so will the deaths,” Mushtuq said.
Meanwhile, the Covid-19 hospitals in the capital continued to struggle to deal with the new patients yesterday.
Only three ICU beds out of 108 in Dhaka’s 10 Covid-19 dedicated hospitals were vacant as of yesterday noon.
Countrywide, 3,545 Covid-19 patients were undergoing treatment in general beds while 358 were in the ICU beds till yesterday.