People need to remain cautious despite drop in infections, she says
A downward trend in Covid-19 infections and deaths over the past month and a half suggests that 60-70% of the country’s population may have developed Covid-19 antibodies, icddr,b Senior Scientist Dr Firdausi Qadri has said.
However, she urged the people to remain cautious as there is a chance that a new Covid-19 variant that circumvents immunities may emerge if the people do not control Covid-19 transmission by following health guidelines.
Dr Qadri made the remarks during an online roundtable and interview organized by the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation on Friday morning.
"There is no guarantee that variants like the Delta variant will not emerge again. More variants may come," said the scientist, a recipient of the Ramon Magsaysay Award 2021.
“Everyone must follow health rules and maintain social distancing,” she added.
The Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation announced Dr Qadri as one of five recipients of the 2021 award on August 31.
According to the foundation, she received the award for her passion and life-long devotion to science.
“Her vision of building human and physical infrastructure that will benefit the coming generation of Bangladeshi scientists, women scientists in particular, and her untiring contributions to vaccine development, advanced biotechnological therapeutics and critical research has saved millions of precious lives,” the foundation added.
The announcement for the award came just a day before Dr Qadri’s husband and former Dhaka University teacher Professor Salehin Qadri died.
In response to a question, Dr Qadri said the number of infections had decreased, but it was still too early to make definitive conclusions about the Covid-19 pandemic.
She also mentioned that Bangladesh had come a long way in the fight against coronavirus.
“The government has taken some initiatives. The tendency of wearing masks outdoors has been increasing. Besides, the ongoing vaccination campaign needs to continue without interruption,” she added.
The scientist also urged young women to engage more in scientific research.