No oxygen shortage in country: Health Minister
Published: 02:20 PM, 27 April 2021
Health Minister Zahid Maleque briefing reporters at the premises of Bangladesh College of Physicians and Surgeons (BCPS) building in Mohakhali in the capital on Tuesday; Photo: Collected
Health Minister Zahid Maleque said there was no shortage of oxygen in the country to combat the coronavirus. We have enough oxygen stored.
The minister made the remarks while talking to reporters at the premises of the Bangladesh College of Physicians and Surgeons (BCPS) building in Mohakhali in the capital on Tuesday.
“We have made arrangements for COVID treatment in the capital’s every hospital,” the minister said. “COVID treatment also being done at TB Hospital, Gastroliver Hospital and Sheikh Hasina Burn Institute.”
Earlier there was 2,500 intensive care unit (ICU) beds, now there are 7,000 beds. “This is what we were able to do overnight,” the Health Minister also said.
He said the government is spending Tk 50,000 on each Covid-19 patient in the ICU of hospitals across the country. And the cost Tk 15,000 for normal patients.
“Lockdown is not the only way. With the lockdown, different countries of the world have reduced the transmission,” Health Minister Zahid Maleque said about the ongoing lockdown. “But there are also downsides to the lockdown. It increases poverty and social instability.”
Regarding the benefits of the lockdown, the Health Minister said the number of infections has come down from 24 to 13. “We got a huge benefit of lockdown. But lockdown can’t happen all the time. Long-term ways of wearing masks, hand sanitizing, following hygiene rules and not attending ceremonies must be followed.”
He said there was a vaccine crisis around the world, adding that 10 of the world’s richest nations had bought 70 percent of the vaccine. So far 50-60 countries have not received the vaccine.