** More curbs on govt officials’ foreign trips ** Children take bath in the Buriganga River in Dhaka to ward off the scorching summer heat. This photo was taken from Buriganga embankment on Monday. NN photo ** Taposh wants shops shut early ** Economists differ with 6.22 per cent inflation rate rather it is about 12 per cent ** Public transport services in capital New law with a provision Tk 5 crore fine on cards ** Sweden takes formal decision to apply for NATO membership ** Drug Admin bans eight types of medicines ** Interpol's Dhaka office requests India to send PK Halder back to Bangladesh ** Dollar price jumps to Tk87.50 ** PK Halder to be brought back following set procedure: FM ** Sri Lanka out of petrol, economy in a precarious condition: PM Wickremesinghe ** Social resistance against grabbers a must to protect Tangail, Gazipur hillocks ** PK Halder on 3-day remand in West Bengal ** In front of Gulshan Society Mosque in the capital, a vested quarter filling parts of Gulshan-Banani Lake creating a land bridge effectively bypassing security checkpoints that protect Gulshan North Diplomatic Zone. This photo was taken on Sunday. NN photo ** All necessary steps will be taken to bring PK Halder back: AG ** Russia's ‘brutal invasion’ of Ukraine is faltering: NATO ** Vladimir Putin ‘seriously ill’: Ex British spy claimed ** It may take three to six months to bring back PK Halder: ACC prosecutor ** Ten killed in ‘racially motivated’ shooting in Buffalo, US ** People stand in queue to buy mustard oil from a small mill at Bata Signal in the Elephant Road area of Dhaka on Sunday. One customer is allowed to buy maximum 2 litres of oil, depending on production. Agency photo ** Fugitive chops off policeman's hand in Ctg ** PK Halder hooked in Kolkata: Government's easy plundering policy created too many such cases ** One of PK Halder's mansions in Ward No. 15 of Ashoknagar in North 24 Parganas district which has been sealed by the ED. Photo: Collected ** Scamstar PK Halder arrested in India ** Worse still to come, Lanka’s new PM warns **

Omicron responsible for 69pc of new Covid-19 cases

18 January 2022

bdnews24.com :
The omicron variant is responsible for nearly 69 percent of new COVID-19 patients in Bangladesh, says Minister of Health and Family Welfare Zahid Maleque.
The discovery was made after testing samples from new coronavirus patients in Dhaka, Maleque told the media at the Secretariat on Sunday.
"Genome sequencing of the samples we collected in Dhaka showed that 69 percent of them were infected by the omicron variant," he said. "This used to be as low as 13 percent. We found this in the past 10 days. We believe the rate will be similar outside Dhaka as well."
Last Wednesday, Zahid Maleque had said that '15-20 percent' of new COVID cases were of the omicron variant. That was also the first day a case of the omicron variant was found outside Dhaka.
The government is concerned that the caseload is growing significantly, Maleque said, urging everyone to follow health rules.
"The number of delta and omicron cases is growing by leaps and bounds," he said. "We are somewhat concerned and worried. In the past 15 days, the positivity rate has soared to 18 percent. If it keeps going like this, it won't take long before the positivity rate is over 30 percent."
"The number of hospitalisations is also on the rise. If it continues this way, there will be no space for patients within a month or a month and a half. It will be difficult to treat everyone. And so, I call on the people and request that they follow health regulations. Maintain social distancing."
The first official cases of the omicron variant in Bangladesh were recorded on Dec 11 in two women cricketers who had returned from a tournament in Zimbabwe.
According to the GISAID website, another case was logged on Dec 27, another four on Dec 28, three on Dec 31, 10 on Jan 6, one on Jan 7, nine on Jan 10, three on Jan 12 and 22 on Sunday.
The first case of the variant was recorded in Dhaka's Basabo area. Patients were then found in Banani and Mohakhali. The new variant has also been found in Jashore, Dhaka's Chankharpul and Uttara.
Last Wednesday, the health minister said the variant had reached the community transmission level.

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