For fear of being diagnosed with Coronavirus
Apart from the financial difficulty many may encounter to pay hugely charged medical bills for which some do not like to visit hospitals and clinics, a lot of people seem not to be much interested in visiting health facilities for fear of being diagnosed as coronavirus patients.
While it remains indisputable that the Coronavirus is raging the world killing many people especially in Italy, United States, and China, public opinion is suggesting in Ganta and other parts of Nimba County that “Any death now is Coronavirus even if people have existing health problems that might claim their lives.”
Some women conversing in a group on Friday morning in Ganta were heard discouraging one another of going to the clinic or hospital for medication, noting that even malaria that is with them throughout the ages has now become Coronavirus.
“For me I will not go to the clinic now because when the doctors test people now there is nothing they can say besides Coronavirus,” said one woman in a group with others.
A patient who had just been discharged from the Ganta United Methodist Hospital after undergoing surgery for Bow Obstruction said: “All the nurses are afraid now to touch any patient, and people themselves are afraid to visit the hospital because they don’t want to be considered Coronavirus.”
“We are encountering a serious problem with patient intake because people do not want to be diagnosed of the virus, and the way the information is disseminated whereby reports of the increase comes, it is causing people to have fear coming to the clinic and hospital,” said a Physician working at the Power House Clinic in Ganta.
Besides the experience of Ebola in 2014 that get residents to withdraw from going to health facilities with the medical problems, there is a growing fear surrounding the death of Don Patrick, a man who came from the United States in February this year and mysteriously fell sick and died in the Tappita region.
According to sources in the area, Patrick had come to pay a dowry for a woman he intended to marry, and during the process, he became ill and went off while in the bathroom following which he was pronounced dead at the Jackson Fiah Doe Hospital.
The controversy surrounding the death of Patrick is that he was about to get married to a woman who was betrothed to a man for whom she bore some children, and Patrick was about to pay the dowry of this woman in the very village the previous husband lives. According to sources, throughout his stay, he did not show any symptoms of illness until during the marriage ceremony.
According to family sources, there was no symptom of Coronavirus diagnosed when the deceased was first taken to the hospital, but after some hours elapsed, they heard again that he died of the virus.
The question that lingers now with no answer is: How come the hospital could not diagnose the case earlier but after many hours before coming out with a positive case of Coronavirus?
With this concern, many citizens, in addition to their possible rejection at clinics and hospitals tracing history to back to Liberia’s Ebola crisis that claimed the lives of many health workers, are resolving not to go to hospitals and clinics for fear that they might pronounce them Coronavirus positive when what is bothering their health may actually be different.
Meanwhile, enforcement of the State of Emergency that was pronounced by President Weah to come into force on April 10 at 11:59 p.m. is beginning to be taking effect. The general market ground in Ganta is now emptied with a few marketers on the ground selling food items. Stores were halfway opened for buyers to purchase rice to take to the villages.