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22 January, 2020 01:14:25 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 22 January, 2020 11:40:51 AM
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Screening starts at Dhaka, Ctg airports

STAFF REPORTER, Dhaka
Screening starts at Dhaka, Ctg airports

Passengers arriving from China are being screened at Bangladesh airports for signs of infection from a mysterious and potentially deadly new respiratory virus.

The authorities have put the airports on alert to prevent the spread of coronavirus in Bangladesh by screening travellers from China, where the virus has infected nearly 300 people and six persons have died.

According to the authorities at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (HSIA) in Dhaka, officers are on alert to detect any infection in passengers travelling from China. The airport has turned on its thermal scanner to scan passengers.  Passengers with body temperature above 100 degrees Fahrenheit will be examined at the airport. If necessary, they will be transferred to Kurmitola General Hospital.

In addition, passengers who have travelled to China in the last 14 days and have flu-like symptoms will be screened at the airport, the airport authorities said.

HSIA director Group Captain AHM Touhid ul Ahsan said that several steps have been taken to prevent the spread of the virus. “If symptoms are detected in any passenger, the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control, and Research (IEDCR) will be notified. The IECDR will then conduct further tests,” he added.

The airport authorities are looking for symptoms like fever, cough, cold, breathing difficulties, and sore throat.

“Three flights operate on the China–Bangladesh route: one of US Bangla and two Chinese airlines— China Eastern and China Southern,” Touhid said. “The screening began with the passengers of a flight that arrived around 7:30am from China,” he added.

The other two flights are scheduled to arrive at 3:30pm and 11pm. “We will screen those passengers as well,” Touhid said. “The IEDCR has in a letter asked the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh to take steps to avoid the possible risk related to the Chinese virus,” Meerjady Sabrina Flora, a director at the institute, said to the media.

“The government’s disease wing has also trained health workers at the airports to detect patients with symptoms of coronavirus infection, which include fever, coughing, and difficulty breathing,” she also said.“We are closely monitoring the matter. We are alert and prepared,” she added.

“The measures to prevent a possible spread of the virus include screening travellers from China by using a thermal scanner to detect fever,” Flora revealed.

At Chattogram’s Shah Amanat International Airport, passengers arriving from China were screened for signs of coronavirus infection. A medical team led by Chattogram’s Divisional Health Officer began working at the airport from January 19 to prevent the spread of the virus. “There is no direct flight to Chattogram airport from China, but many passengers travel here via connecting flights,” airport manager Wing Commander Sarwar E Zaman said.

“No passengers have been detected with coronavirus symptoms so far,” he also said. There are posters around the airport area to raise awareness about coronavirus, he added.

The virus was first identified last year in Wuhan, a central Chinese city with a population of 11 million.

The new disease belongs to a broad family of viral ailments ranging from the common cold to more serious illnesses, according to the United Nation’s health agency.

IK

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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