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Dhaka Tribune

Coronavirus is not going away in next 2-3 years

The ratio of infection may not be the same in the upcoming days, says the DGHS chief

Update : 18 Jun 2020, 04:58 PM

The novel coronavirus, which is wreaking havoc around the world, is going to stay in Bangladesh for the next two to three years, said Prof Abul Kalam Azad, director general of health services. 

Speaking at the daily Covid-19 bulletin of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) on Thursday, Prof Azad said: “The Covid-19 situation will not change in one, two or three months. As per the experts’ opinion, it will sustain for the next two or three years, or more, in Bangladesh. 

“The ratio of infection may not be the same in the upcoming days,” he added.

Earlier on Wednesday morning, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina gave directives to the DGHS chief regarding the capacity building of the country’s health service. 

“We are working on building our capacity for the long term, as per the prime minister’s instruction. Recently, we appointed 2,000 doctors and 5,000 nurses. A number of medical technologists will be appointed soon as well,” Prof Azad said on Thursday.

The DG of health services also opined that Covid-19 testing capacity would be expanded further across the country, and the government will set up rt-PCR laboratories at district level as early as possible.

“Our aim is to expand Covid-19 testing facilities down to upazila level,” he added. 

He further said: “We are also working to ensure that every district hospital has ICU facilities. Government hospitals in every district will be connected to the central oxygen supply line as well.”

The DGHS chief focused on a combined healthcare system with the collaboration of both public and private hospitals. “Measures will be taken so that every patient can get healthcare service at a public or private hospital, whether the patient is Covid-19 positive or not. Private hospital treatment fee will be adjusted as well.”

Regarding the zone mapping based on Covid-19 clusters, Prof Azad said an expert team was working to specify red, yellow and green zones. “That zoning system will be implemented in areas where it is necessary.”

He also urged the doctors to provide quick medical assistance to Covid-19 patients. 

“Please don’t wait for the test results; start medical assistance if you think the patient is showing Covid-19 symptoms,” he said. 

He also urged everyone to strictly follow the health safety protocols.

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