Positivity rate soars despite poor testing
The coronavirus positivity rate in the country has soared in the last few days despite a decline in the number of tests during this period.
The health directorate yesterday confirmed 2,666 new cases after testing 11,059 samples in the last 24 hours till yesterday afternoon, meaning the rate was 24.11 percent.
This is the highest single-day positivity rate since the first case was detected in the country on March 8.
Positivity rate is the percentage of positive cases against the total number of tests in a day.
The total number of infections in the country stood at 1,83,795.
Meanwhile, 47 more people died from the Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, taking the death toll to 2,352. The current death rate against the total infections is 1.27 percent.
The number of Covid-19 patients recovered during this period was 5,580, taking the tally to 93,614. The current recovery rate is 50.93 percent.
Speaking on the positivity rate, experts said data suggest that the transmission of the virus is declining in the urban areas and is increasing in the rural areas.
The latest testing data from multiple labs in Dhaka and Narayanganj show a stable trend in the transmission of virus infection in these two major hotspots.
"When we started, we found around 40 percent positivity rate. It declined over the time and it was between 12 and 18 percent during the last seven days [as of Saturday]," Prof Saif Ullah Munshi, chairman of Virology at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) who heads the BSMMU Covid-19 testing lab, told The Daily Star.
Prof Ridwanur Rahman, an infectious disease specialist, said it was tough to measure the reality with inadequate testing.
"But transmission seems stable in Dhaka and Narayanganj, because most of the people are maintaining health guidelines," he said.
In Narayanganj, the average positive rate was 19.5 percent during the first 10 days of June, according to Narayanganj Civil Surgeon Dr Mohammad Imtiaz.
The rate has dropped to around 12 percent in the first 10 days of this month, he said.
The number of Covid-19 tests has dropped significantly in recent weeks after the government imposed fees on the tests from the beginning of July.
Prof Nasima Sultana, additional director general of DGHS said 43 of the deceased died at different hospitals while four died at home.
She said 50 percent deaths were reported from Dhaka division and 26.28 percent from Chattogram division and 2.34 percent from Mymensingh division.
Of the dead, she said, 36 were male and rest were female.
She said 23 of them were from Dhaka, six from Chattogram, six from Khulna, four from Sylhet, four from Rajshahi, two from Rangpur and two others from Barishal divisions.
One of them was aged between 11 and 20 years, two between 21 and 30, three were between 31 and 40, four between 41 and 50, 15 between 51 and 60, 14 between 61 and 70, six within 71 and 80 and two were between 81 and 90 years, Dr Nasima also said.