• Tuesday, Aug 04, 2020
  • Last Update : 08:32 am

Covid-19 battering frontline fighters in Bangladesh

  • Published at 08:18 pm July 4th, 2020
Health desk to identify coronavirus
File photo of a health desk is set up to screen people for signs of the coronavirus Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Healthcare professionals, police and journalists among most infected groups

The Covid-19 pandemic continues to run rampant in the country and more frontline fighters are infected by the novel SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus every day. Doctors, nurses, medical staff, police, journalists, administration officials, members of the judiciary, and the armed forces, have all suffered a significant number of casualties.

Four months after the first Covid-19 cases were detected in the country, the infection rate is showing no sign of slowing down, and the situation is unlikely to become easier with fewer available frontline fighters.

1,658 doctors infected, 61 dead

A total 61 doctors have so far died with Covid-19 symptoms,  according to the Bangladesh Medical Association.

Dr KM Muntakim Chowdhury, former physiology professor at Sir Salimullah Medical College, became the latest victim of Covid-19 when he passed away on Saturday morning.

As of Saturday 1,694 doctors, 1,344 nurses, and 1,919 other medical staff have been infected with the novel coronavirus, mostly while treating, collecting test samples, or providing other medical services to patients at various hospitals and clinics.

The highest number of infected doctors, 665, were infected in Dhaka, and 236 were infected in Chittagong. 

625 nurses and 423 other medical staff also tested positive for Covid-19 in Dhaka.

44 police dead, over 11,000 infected

Data compiled by police headquarters shows that 44 police officers have died from Covid-19, while 11,431  have so far been infected till Saturday.

Among them, 2,330 are from Dhaka Metropolitan Police.

Another 11,505  police are in quarantine, while 4,781  are in isolation. So far, 7,463 police officers have recovered from the deadly disease.

Over 3000 members of armed forces infected

A total 3,477 members of the armed forces, including those in service and retired as well as their family members, have been infected with Covid-19 as of June 13.

The Inter Services Public Relation Directorate (ISPR) in a statement also said 2,038 of the armed forces officials had already recovered.

Over 500 journalists tested positive for Covid-19

At least ten journalists have died from Covid-19 and 527 have been infected with the deadly coronavirus in Bangladesh.

Another eight journalists have died with Covid-19 like symptoms as of Friday, according to the platform, Our Media Our Rights.

Of the total confirmed cases among journalists, 400 are from Dhaka and 127 from other districts. The journalists represent 135 media houses including 80 newspapers, 27 television channels, 22 internet news portals, five radio stations, and one news agency.

40 judges infected

Courts have been closed since late March, with virtual courts operating in their stead. Nevertheless, 40 judges, 136 staff of subordinate courts, and 45 officials of the Supreme Court have so far been infected with Covid-19.

Lalmonirhat Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal Judge Ferdous Ahmed died of Covid-19 on June 24.

Another judge is currently undergoing treatment, while 21 more are being treated at home.

Covid-19 in Bangladesh, at a glance

The number of Covid-19 cases has been on a continuous rise in Bangladesh since early March, with 1,997 deaths and 159,679 infections detected, so far.

The number of people who have tested positive for Covid-19 crossed the 100,000 mark in Bangladesh on June 18, nearly three and a half months after the country recorded its first case on March 8.

The country crossed 1,000 deaths within 91 days of recording the first death on March 11.

Bangladesh now ranks 18th in the list of countries worst hit by the Covid-19 pandemic in terms of the number of confirmed cases, according to data compiled by Worldometer.

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