National advisory committee recommends wearing masks

Abu Sufian

Amid the surge of new JN.1 Covid variant globally, the National Technical Advisory Committee (NTAC) on Covid-19 has suggested the authorities concerned to take necessary initiatives, including mask-wearing, to prevent the spread of the virus.

The committee came up with four recommendations in its 65th meeting held on Tuesday with Dr Mohammad Shahidullah, president of the NTAC, in the chair, according to a press release.

An elaborate discussion was held at the meeting about the latest surge of JN.1 variant, and advice of the World Health Organisation (WHO) regarding the new variant. Mentioning that the Covid situation is under control and the new variant has not been identified yet in the country,

the committee suggested taking precautionary measures including wearing of masks, especially in high-risk areas including hospitals and by individuals with low immunity.

It also suggested the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) to strengthen surveillance by reviewing the global reports to monitor the infection situation and take necessary preparations for quick treatment including Covid tests and ICU in case of emergency in future.

Additionally, the committee advised screening travellers arriving from abroad. It also proposed making decisions regarding Covid vaccines based on ongoing analysis of scientific data

and advised individuals at high risk to consider a fourth dose. The meeting also recommended conducting a Covid test before any surgery in cases where the patient exhibits any symptoms.

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