Weekly test positivity drops by 44% in two weeks

Infection rate may come down below 5% within March, experts predict

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Bangladesh is witnessing a sharp decline in daily Covid-19 cases for two weeks now with the weekly test positivity dropping by 44% compared to two weeks ago. 

The number of week-wise fresh cases also dropped by 52% from a six-digit figure to a five-digit one.

With the weekly moving average of infections on a downward trend, public health experts predict that Bangladesh could bring an end to the Omicron outbreak within less than three weeks if the trend continues.

The average week-wise test positivity was 31.59% from January 24 to 30, which came down to 25.78% in the next seven days till February 6. It further dropped to 17.67% in the last seven days till February 13, data compiled by the Directorate General of Health Services show.

The number of week-wise cases was 100,196 between seven days from January 24, with an average of a little over 14,300 daily cases. The weekly caseload came down by 25% to 76,200 cases with an average of around 10,900 cases daily in the week starting from January 31.

In the seven days till February 13, the weekly caseload came down by around 44% compared to the first week (January 24-30) to 48,132 cases, with an average of around 10,200 cases recorded daily.

If the declining transmission rate continues, experts assume that the Omicron outbreak may end by the first week of March as indicators show that the transmission rate may come down to below 5% by the time frame.

In terms of death, Bangladesh reported 140 confirmed deaths in a seven-days time frame between January 24 and 30. Confirmed deaths jumped to 226 in the next week, and 230 in another seven days till February 13.

Omicron led infections peak quickly, fall quickly

“Covid-19 infections caused by the Omicron variant peaked quickly but will wear out quickly as well,” predicts a leading health expert.

Mushtaq Hussain, adviser to the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR), on Sunday told Dhaka Tribune that the test positivity rate would go down to below 5% in the fourth week of February while the number of deaths would drop by the second week of March.

He, however, said that there might be another wave as many of the people in the country were still unvaccinated. 

“This is the reason why people need to follow the health guidelines even though the number of infections is declining,” he told Dhaka Tribune.

The health authorities in Bangladesh recorded 13.53% test positivity with a total of 4,692 daily cases recorded in the 24 hours till yesterday morning. A total of 19 people succumbed to death, the lowest casualty figures since January 28 when 20 people lost their lives from Covid-19.

Analysing different aspects and indicators, DGHS spokesperson Dr Robed Amin said the test positivity would come down to below 5% in the first week of March.

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