In the past week, 62,021 COVID tests were conducted in Dhaka. Of these, 17,437 have come back positive, for a positivity rate of 28.11 per cent. It is the highest rate in the country and the Directorate General of Health Services has designated Dhaka as the district at highest risk.
Eleven districts, including Chattogram, fall into the high-risk category, while 31 others are at medium risk. Districts at high risk have registered positivity rates of 10 to 19 per cent, reports bdnews24.com.
Bandarban, however, has not been counted among this group despite recording a positivity rate of 14.12 per cent because the DGHS says the number of tests conducted there is too low.
The DGHS made the announcement on Wednesday, based on data from Jan 10 to January 16.
According to their count, 80 per cent of new COVID cases were logged in Dhaka. Of the 8,407 new patients registered on Tuesday, 6,597 were residents of Dhaka – nearly 78 per cent.
The DGHS has created three colour-coded categories for districts in the country to delineate pandemic risk. Areas at high risk are in red, those at medium risk are in yellow, and those at low risk are in green.
Districts above a 20 per cent positivity rate are denoted in dark red, with an even darker shade of red to be used for any districts that cross a positivity rate of 30 per cent.
The high-risk districts are Chattogram, Rajshahi, Rangamati, Bogura, Kushtia, Dinajpur, Jashore, Lalmonirhat, Gazipur, Panchagarh and Khagrachhari. Among them, Chattogram has a positivity rate of 18.48 per cent.
Sherpur, Sirajganj, Narayanganj, Rangpur, Khulna, Mymensingh, Feni, Kurigram, Jamalpur, Sylhet, Natore, Cox’s Bazar, Thakurgaon, Jhenaidah, Faridpur, Gopalganj, Naogaon, Barishal, Magura, Joypurhat, Jhalkathi, Noakhali, Patuakhali, Munshiganj, Manikganj, Satkhira, Lakshmipur, Pirojpur, Bagerhat, Shariatpur and Narail are all in the yellow zone of medium risk, having registered 5 per cent to 9 per cent positivity rates.
Twenty other districts are in the green category as their positivity rate is still below 5 per cent.
They are Cumilla, Chandpur, Pabna, Brahmanbaria, Habiganj, Narsingdi, Kishoreganj, Sunamganj, Tangail, Madaripur, Rajbari, Bhola, Netrokona, Gaibandha, Chapainawabganj, Barguna, Chuadanga, Nilphamari and Meherpur.
The number of infections has risen in 61 districts and fallen in three within the past week, according to DGHS data.
Dhaka has seen infections soar by 15 per cent – the highest in the country. Chattogram has seen a spike of 13.82 per cent. Rangamati has seen a rise of 12.58 per cent from the previous week.
“It has spread to the entire country and the number of cases is rising day by day,” Dr Mushtaq Ahmed, a former IEDCR chief scientific officer, told bdnews24.com.
“If we do sufficient tests, I fear we could see 30,000 to 50,000 new cases recorded in a single day.”