BUCHANAN, Grand Bassa – Nearly two days after Grand Bassa confirmed its first Coronavirus case, three additional cases have emerged.
The county health officer of Grand Bassa, Dr. Anthony Tucker, informed the public on May 14 that the county has recorded its first case, an employee of ArcelorMittal. The company later confirmed the information in a press release.
Tucker said the employee fell sick on April 26 and his specimen was taken to Monrovia for testing, but the first result returned negative. A second test was conducted on May 11 and returned positive, causing the patient to be taken to an isolation center at ArcelorMittal’s hospital in Buchanan.
On May 16, Tucker informed the media that additional three persons from the same family had tested positive for the virus: “His wife and two sisters who are also at his house were confirmed positive. They have been quarantined already.”
The recent cases mean Grand Bassa now has four total Coronavirus cases.
Tucker told journalists that because the first patient in Grand Bassa told officials he had traveled to Yekepa before falling sick, ten persons who came in close contact have been quarantined, including four in Yekepa, Nimba and six in Buchanan, Grand Bassa.
“Our contact tracers are doing everything possible to quarantine all those who came in close contact with him,” Tucker noted.
Grand Bassa recorded its first case three days after the National Social Security Corporation turned over a segment of its building to county authorities to be used as an isolation center for suspected cases. The 16-room facility was previously leased by Buchanan Renewables Energy and subsequently by ArcelorMittal.
Meanwhile, the quarantine center at the Liberian Government Hospital has been designated as a center for confirmed cases.
Grand Bassa’s county superintendent, Janjay Baikpeh, has named a 32-person task force to coordinate the county’s COVID-19 response. The team includes the superintendent himself, Assistant Fiscal Superintendent Daniel J. Willie, Assistant Development Superintendent Flee Glay, and representatives from key organizations in the county, including ArcelorMittal, the Liberian Agricultural Company, and Equatorial Palm Oil.
Baikpeh said the task force would galvanize support for the county’s fight against COVID-19.