The Chinese Ambassador in Bangladesh H.E. Mr. Li Jiming organized a Video-Conference on sharing of practical and successful Chinese experiences in combating Coronavirus Pandemic in China with Bangladesh health officials and medical workers on 8 April 2020. China’s foremost Clinical Expert in combating Coronavirus, Professor Dr. Zhang Wenhong, Head of the Center for Infectious Disease, Huashan Hospital of Fudan University of Shanghai shared the practical and successful experiences in combating the Pandemic with Bangladesh team led by H.E. Mr. Zahid Maleque MP, Hon. Minister of Health and Family Welfare of Bangladesh. Other members of Bangladesh teams were the leading expert and officials responsible for combating Coronavirus Pandemic in Bangladesh, such as, DGHS, IEDCR, DGMS and NIPSOM led by the Director Generals of respective agencies. The Video Conference was live streamed via Facebook by Chinese Embassy enabling PPD officials and many other renowned epidemiologists, physicians and experts of the country to watch the discussions.
The introductory statements were made by H.E. Mr. Li Jiming, Chinese Ambassador to Bangladesh, H.E. Mr. Zahid Maleque MP, Hon. Minister of Health and Family Welfare of Bangladesh and Mr. Bel Zhaojian, Deputy Director, Foreign Affairs of Shanghai People’s Government. Professor Dr. Zhang Wenhong made a very comprehensive and in-depth presentation on successful combating and most resolute containment of the Coronavirus Pandemic in China within the shortest possible time. After the presentation, the DGHS, IEDCR, DGMS and NIPSOM team members asked numerous pertinent preventive and treatment-related technical and clinical questions, which were responded by Professor Dr. Zhang Wenhong very systematically. During the presentation and question-answer sessions, Prof. Dr. Zhang Wenhong gave responses and advices on the whole range of preventive, diagnostic, clinical and treatment related actions. He specifically emphasized on the following few actions in the context of Bangladesh still not having huge amount of infections and fatalities.
He said that all the confirmed and suspected cases should be identified by information, symptoms and contract tracing and strictly quarantined and given necessary treatment. Staying at home is the best way to maintain social distancing, which effectively prevents spread of the infection. The public/university gyms and exhibition centers could be used as temporary hospitals for mild, asymptomatic and suspected cases. Outpatient Services for normal fever and cold should be setup to separate them from corona patients and avoid hospital-borne coronavirus infections. He preferred Real Time PCR tests and discouraged antibody tests, which has not yet been proven reliable. He emphasized on having enough ventilators and oxygen therapy provisions for critical patients to prevent occurrences of deaths. The invasive ventilation provision should also be available to use when necessary.
Specific suggestions were put forward on the imperatives during preliminary conditions and development of the situation in epidemic proportion in Bangladesh. Detailed answers were given to technical questions related to detection of reagent type, false negative phenomena, operation of temporary hospitals and sample collection etc. He underscored the necessity of improved nutrition during treatment of the patients. Most importantly, he advised not to observe and treat the mild and asymptomatic patients at home or in regular hospitals, rather to hospitalize them in temporary shelters and mobile clinics, which could later be repurposed based on necessity.
Hon. Minister and heads of respective departmental teams greatly appreciated the conference, profusely thanked Chinese Embassy for arranging the program and Prof. Zhang for scholarly presentations, discussions and advices.
The video conference was highly effective and had great significance to help prevention and control of the epidemic in Bangladesh. Proceedings of the 2-hour online conference will be developed, edited and broadcast on China Global Television Network (CGTN) and RTV of Bangladesh.