• Thursday, Apr 09, 2020
  • Last Update : 03:05 am

Coronavirus: Many returnees from abroad being home-quarantined

  • Published at 11:38 pm March 10th, 2020

No new case detected; 3 infected patients doing well, IEDCR says

Amid growing concern over coronavirus, people arriving in Bangladesh from different countries with fever are being quarantined at their homes or in hospitals.

The government has suggested that the returnees stay in self-quarantine as a precautionary measure to stop the spread of the deadly virus, reports UNB.   

Although no new case of coronavirus infection was reported in the last 24 hours in Bangladesh, reports from different districts show that returnees from coronavirus-affected countries, including Saudi Arabia, Singapore and China, are being kept in isolation at their homes.  

In Dhaka, a couple returning from Saudi Arabia early on Tuesday were sent to a hospital with ‘respiratory problems’ after their arrival at Hazrat Shahajalal International Airport.

Meanwhile, the BNP on Tuesday demanded the government order a shutdown of schools and colleges at least for two weeks to prevent coronavirus from spreading in the country.

“We think educational institutions, including schools and colleges, need to be closed immediately, said the BNP.

“At least a two-week closure is needed at the initial stage, and then further steps can be taken after observing the situation,” sstated BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir at the party’s Nayapaltan central office.

In the wake of the detection of coronavirus cases in Bangladesh, the party has postponed its demonstration scheduled for Wednesday across Bangladesh seeking party chief Khaleda Zia’s release.

The coronavirus outbreak has forced the Bangladesh History Association to postpone its 20th annual international conference scheduled for March 20-21 at the National Academy for Educational Management (NAEM).

The association took the decision at an emergency meeting on Tuesday, said a press release signed by its General Secretary Prof Dr Asha Islam Nayeem.

In Manikganj, a total of 59 people arriving from abroad have been kept in isolation at their homes, according to information provided by the district civil surgeon office.

Deputy Commissioner SM Ferdous said if any symptom of coronavirus infection was found in their bodies, they would be sent to hospital.  

In Narayanganj, some 15-20 people, who came in contact with one of the three infected patients, have been quarantined at their homes, said Mohammad Jasim Uddin, deputy commissioner of the district.

In Rajbari, five people, including a man and his son, who returned home from Italy, have been placed under home quarantine in Baliakandi upazila.

Upazila Nirbahi Officer of Baliakandi AKM Hedayetul Islam said they returned home on March 2 and the upazila administration had come to know about it only on Monday. “We advised them to remain in self-isolation for the sake of safety although they have no symptom of coronavirus.”

In Jessore, a woman who returned from Saudi Arabia on March 7 has been quarantined at her home in Manirampur upazila, said Upazila Health Officer Dr Suvra Rani Debnath.

In Chuadanga, a woman arriving in Bangladesh from Saudi Arabia was admitted to the corona isolation unit of Damurhuda upazila Health Complex on Tuesday morning with fever, cough and pain.

In Chandpur, another Italy returnee Bangladeshi was hospitalised with fever on Monday and kept in the isolation ward at Matlab Uttar Health Complex.

In Shariatpur, over 150 Bangladeshi expatriates living in Italy returned home in Naria upazila in the last two weeks, causing worries for their relatives and local residents. 

A five-bed isolation unit has been opened at Sadar Hospital considering any possible Covid-19 infection. Besides, a 100-bed quarantine unit has been set up there.

Suman Kumar Poddar, resident medical officer at the hospital, said it was yet to be confirmed if any corona case was there in the upazila. 

The Director of the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR), Prof Dr Meerjady Sabrina Flora, at a regular press briefing on Tuesday said the condition of the three patients earlier diagnosed with Covid-19 was stable.

"In the last 24 hours, we tested saliva samples of seven more people. They do not have coronavirus. We have so far tested samples of 127 people and three have been diagnosed with the virus," she said.

The IEDCR director also mentioned that eight people coming from overseas had been in the isolation ward while four others had been placed in institutional quarantine.

"Besides, we are asking many of those who have come from abroad to stay in self-quarantine. Those who are in self-quarantine are not being counted within the IEDCR census," she added.

Dr Flora mentioned that the IEDCR hotlines had received 3,145 calls in the past 24 hours. It had also increased its hotline numbers to 24. 

The first three coronavirus patients were detected in Bangladesh on Sunday. The infected patients include two men and one woman, and all of them were kept in quarantine.

Besides, the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) on Tuesday supplied five thermal scanners for three international airports and a land port across Bangladesh.

The Chief of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the threat of a pandemic had become very real.

His words came as Cyprus confirmed its first two Covid-19 cases, which means all European Union members have reported infection cases.

Meanwhile, the global death toll from the virus climbed to 4,038 on Tuesday while the number of infected persons rose to 116,038, according to Worldometer.

Of the infected people, 64,277 have made full recovery, which is 94% of those infected.

Coronavirus has affected 115 countries and territories around the world and 1 international conveyance (the Diamond Princess Cruise ship harboured in Yokohama, Japan).