• Thursday, Aug 06, 2020
  • Last Update : 04:58 pm

Experts fear rise in Covid-19 infections after Eid

  • Published at 08:47 pm May 19th, 2020
Mad_Rush_Mehedi Hasan
Homegoers flock to the Shimulia-Kathalbari ferry terminal in Munshiganj to head home for the upcoming Eid-ul-Fitr holidays on Monday, May 18, 2020 Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

The test-positive rate of Covid-19 in Bangladesh has been on the rise lately

More people have been getting infected with Covid-19 recently as the process of easing the lockdown was not conducted properly, experts have said.

The reopening of garment factories and markets also contributed to the increased rate of infection, with the situation likely to worsen as people rush home for Eid, they added.

After extending the lockdown several times since it was initiated on March 26, the government decided to extend it once more while at the same time easing restrictions on a limited scale from the first week of May.

According to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), the death toll from the deadly Sars-CoV-2 coronavirus rose to 370 with 21 new deaths in the last 24 hours. The total number of infections stood at 25,121 with 1,251 new cases in the same time span.

DGHS Associate Professor (Epidemiology) Dr Md Rizwanul Karim Shameem said the number of confirmed cases would increase as the number of tests conducted per day had increased. A sudden spike in the increase of cases would pose difficult problems for the country.

Quoting DGHS data, the experts said Bangladesh had seen 11% of the total number of tests conducted come back positive. However, the rate has increased to 14-16% since May 12. 

BSSMU virology Professor Saif Ullah Munshi said allowing movement, especially during the Eid rush period, would cause increased transmission of the novel coronavirus. It might lead to the virus spreading to rural areas that were yet to be affected.

“The possibilities of increasing the rate of transmission are certainly very high,” the professor added.

Dr Be-Nazir Ahmed of NIPSOM said asymptomatic coronavirus patients would not even realize they were spreading the virus, and those they infect would unknowingly spread the virus as well. 

The professor blamed the increasing number of infections and deaths on the authorities' failure to control the Covid-19 situation and mismanagement at hospitals.

“It definitely shows that the measures that have been taken till now have failed to stop the transmission of the virus, causing the deaths of many people,” he said.

“Proper action needs to be taken to save areas little affected by Covid-19, in order to avoid further personal, financial, economic and social losses,” the public health expert added.

“The result of the Eid rush to get home will be felt after Eid, and that will define where we stand. All signs indicate that the situation will be much worse after Eid. Without properly planned initiatives, it will be impossible for the healthcare sector to cope with the problem,” he went on to say.

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