Bangladesh on Friday reported the deaths of 37 more people, including 14 women, from Coronavirus, the lowest since March 28.
The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) said the new fatalities pushed up the country’s death toll to 11,833 and the mortality rate to 1.54 %.
Besides, the DGHS said, 1,682 new cases were detected during the period following the test of 17,013 samples, taking the total case count to 770,842.
"The number of deaths, recorded so far, is lower compared to the number of positive cases. This warrants conduction of genomic sequencing to see if any new but less virulent variant is in the offing," Dr AM Zakir Hussain, former director of the Institute of Epidemiology Disease Control and Research, told UNB.
Also, the country's infection rate rose to 9.89%, which was 8.44% a day ago, according to the DGHS.
The number of Covid deaths came down to as low as 50 after over a month on Wednesday as Bangladesh saw 50 deaths earlier on April 1 and it had kept rising since then. The body count soared to over 100 during April 16-19 and on April 25 but the daily fatalities have been falling gradually since then.
According to the DGHS, 2,178 infected people recovered in the past 24 hours, putting the recovery rate at 91.37%.
Bangladesh has so far carried out 559,9276 nationwide tests since reporting its first coronavirus cases on March 8 last year, the first death on the 18th of that month.
Bangladesh launched its vaccination drive on February 7 with Oxford-AstraZeneca doses purchased from India's Serum Institute.
Bangladesh signed an agreement with Serum for 30 million doses. But a record number of cases in India has made the delivery of the doses uncertain.
India has tried to ward off its Covid crisis by ramping up its production of vaccines and banning their export, cutting off supplies to neighbours such as Bangladesh and Nepal as they struggle with infection surges.
The administering of the first dose has remained suspended in Bangladesh since April 26. Also, the country, the prime recipient of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines, has suspended the registration for Covid-19 jabs due to vaccine shortage amid a delay in the timely arrival of shipments from India.
However, DGHS DG Prof ABM Khurshid Alam assured that Bangladesh would get 2.1 million doses of vaccines by early May.
Dwindling vaccine stock
India's shortage of shots has its global implications because, in addition to its vaccination efforts, the country promised to ship out vaccines abroad as part of a United Nations vaccine-sharing programme that is dependent on its supply.
The DGHS on Wednesday said the stock of the Covid-19 vaccine is dwindling in Bangladesh as there are only 14 lakh jabs left with no sign in sight to get a fresh consignment of it from India.
DGHS spokesperson Dr Robed Amin said, "We had around 1 crore and 2 lakh doses. Around 88 lakh jabs have already been administered as the first and second doses. Now we've some 14 lakh doses in stock."