The government will be confirmed within a few days whether the highly contagious Indian variant of coronavirus has already reached Bangladesh as an investigation is going on in this regard, said Director General of Health Services (DGHS) on Monday.
Speaking at a virtual press briefing, DGHS spokesperson Dr Nazmul Islam, said, "We may be able to say it in a few days whether the Indian strain of Covid-19 has come to Bangladesh or not."
He said the samples of those who tested positive for coronavirus after entering Bangladesh from India are being collected. “These samples are being sent for genome sequencing…we’ll share it with you immediately after receiving the report.”
Replying to a question, Nazmul said whether those who have taken the first doses of the Oxford vaccine can take the second doses of any other company’s vaccine, he said they did not yet get any specific advice from the World Health Organization and vaccine companies to this end.
He said they will wait for 12 weeks to have the Oxford Vaccine and they hope they will get it by this time.
“There’s some sort of politics and diplomacy around the world over vaccines. Even then, it should be the ultimate victory of humanity. As we’ve seen Bangladesh finally came out victorious always. That's why we want to be confident that we’ll get the Oxford vaccine and will complete the second dose with the same,” The DGHS spokesman said.
He said the stock of the vaccine collected by the government from India is about to run out.
Nazmul said 58,19,709 people received the first doses of the vaccine while 29,36,241 the second doses as of May 2. “We don’t have many vaccine doses in our hands now.”
He said they hoped that they would get vaccine doses from China by this month.
The DGHS spokesman said efforts are on to collect the vaccines from different sources, including China and Russia, as early as possible.
Stating that mask is the biggest preventive gear against Coronavirus in absence of a vaccine, Nazmul urged all to wear masks whenever they come out of their homes and maintain health safety rules to remain safe from the virus.