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Bangladesh’s COVID-19 fatality rate is double that of global average 

According to the Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 tracker, the death rate in Bangladesh stands at 10.40 per cent, with 20 fatalities. Interestingly, the death rate in Bangladesh is nearly double the global rate of 5.08 per cent.

Written by Abhishek De | New Delhi | Updated: April 8, 2020 11:32:47 pm
People wait outside a gate to receive relief supplies provided by local police authority in Dhaka, Bangladesh. (Reuters)

Despite ranking 70th in terms of death toll and having far fewer number of coronavirus infections than many other countries, the fatality rate in Bangladesh is the highest in South Asia and comparatively higher than most nations affected by COVID-19.

According to the Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 tracker, the death rate in Bangladesh stands at 10.40 per cent, with 20 fatalities. Interestingly, the death rate in Bangladesh is nearly double the global rate of 5.08 per cent. Read in Bangla. 

On Wednesday, Bangladesh reported 54 infections, the highest single-day increase in COVID-19 cases, taking the overall total to 218. Follow LIVE Updates

The worldwide number of fatalities from the novel coronavirus rose to 83,726 on Wednesday, with 1,459,343 confirmed cases registered in 212 countries. Of these cases, at least 308,617 persons have recovered or discharged.

Women sit on the ground maintaining social distance to receive relief supplies in Dhaka. (Reuters)

According to the JHU tracker, the fatality rate is 2.8 per cent in India, 1.4 per cent in Pakistan, 3.3 per cent in Afghanistan and 3.2 per cent Sri Lanka while no one is known to have died from COVID-19 in Nepal, Bhutan and the Maldives.

All of the above South Asian countries but Sri Lanka have reported more cases than Bangladesh. While India has reported 5274 cases and 149 deaths, Pakistan has 4035 cases and 57 deaths and Afghanistan 423 cases and 14 deaths. Sri Lanka has so far recorded 185 cases and 6 deaths.

A security personnel checks the body temperature of customers with a thermal scanner at the entrance to a bank in Dhaka, Bangladesh. (Reuters)

Liberia, situated in West Africa, has the highest fatality rate of 21.4 per cent but has reported just 14 cases, including three deaths.

Among the top 10 countries with most deaths from COVID-19, only Italy (12.6 per cent), the United Kingdom (11 per cent) and The Netherlands (10.7 per cent) have a higher fatality rate than Bangladesh.

Experts have told bdnews24, a Bangladesh media outlet, that the possible reason for the high death rate in the country was that many people were going undetected. The Sheikh Hasina government has also faced flak for a lack of coronavirus tests.

READ | Which countries have reversed the trend in daily cases

Bangladesh’s disease control agency Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) tested only 1,900 people till last week, bdnews24 reported. This means the rate of COVID-19 test is a little over 11 people among every one million in Bangladesh.

“We had been conducting tests on only severe cases. The rate of patients with morbidity was higher among them. So, the death rate was high. The number of patients would have appeared higher if we had conducted tests on mild and moderate cases as well,” bdnews24 quoted a former IEDCR official as saying.

IEDCR director Meerjady Sabrina Flora, however, has denied reports that many patients were going undetected.

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