Sample collection for coronavirus tests is being seriously hampered in Cumilla City Corporation (CCC) area due to insufficient manpower.
Consequently, samples are not being collected for tests of the pandemic as per needs of the suspects.
Due to non-collection of samples at the right time, infection of the virus is increasing alarmingly in Cumilla city.
Also on Wednesday, 48 people in Cumilla city tested coronavirus positive.
According to CCC sources, samples for coronavirus tests are collected in the city under supervision of the mayor.
Since the outbreak of coronavirus in the country, samples have been collected from 833 people in the city corporation area.
Of them, 800 samples have been the tested and 160 suspects have been found coronavirus positive.
Of the total, four died and six recovered.
However, more samples could have been collected if there was sufficient manpower and if the exact number of patients had been identified, infection could have been controlled substantially.
According to sources at the CCC, there are only eight people in 27 wards of Cumilla city to collect coronavirs samples, which is much less than the requirement.
It is not possible to collect COVID-19 samples with such insufficient manpower.
Also four out of the eight are over fifty years of age and they are very much physically unfit.
Zahirul Islam, who works as a vaccination supervisor in the health department of Cumilla City Corporation, has been made the co-ordinator of coronavirus sample collection in Cumilla city.
He is working on Cumilla City Corporation's Mother and Child Immunisation Programme and there are four vaccinators under him. At present, the four vaccinators are also collecting coronavirus samples.
Zahirul Islam said two people from the Civil Surgeon's Office and two from the city corporation have been given the responsibility to collect coronavirus samples.
However, eight people is not enough to cover such a large area of the city corporation.
He also said, "We receive applications for sample collection from at least one to one and a half hundred people every day. But even with such a small number of manpower, it is not possible to collect samples of so many people. The health department has also been asked to send samples collected before 12 noon. But we have to collect samples in the afternoon, due to which samples cannot be sent at the right time. So it is necessary to increase manpower here on an urgent basis."
Cumilla City Corporation Mayor Monirul Haque Sakku said, "After the inauguration of the ICU at Cumilla Medical College Hospital on Wednesday, I brought the issue to the notice of Local Government Minister MdTajul Islam. He later approved appointment of eight more people to collect coronavirus samples. Besides, he allocated Tk 1.00 crore for PCR machine from his own fund."