Worrying Signals of COVID-19 Infection in Liberia

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Worrying Signals of COVID-19 Infections

… As GoL Releases Travel Protocol

Liberia began responding to the COVID-19, since March 16, 2020, following the detection, and treatment of its first case. 

Since then, says a statement by Liberia’s COVID-19 Incidence Management System, the country has recorded a total cumulative cases of 1,773, with Montserrado county accounting for 1320 cases. A total of ten laboratory confirmed cases were detected during this period with Montserrado County alone accounting for eight, while Grand Gedeh and Grand Cape Mount Counties accounted for one each, respectively.

The Incident Management System-COVID-19, headed by Health Minister, Dr. Wilhelmina S. Jallah, with tremendous support from partners including the World Health Organization (WHO), United States Center for Disease Control (US-CDC), United States Aid for International Development (USAID), UNICEF, The World Bank, International Rescue Committee, INTERNEWS, among others, continued to jointly work with various county health teams, especially Montserrado County in interrupting further spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The COVID-19 continues to have an adverse effect on Liberians according to gender, with a total of 408 infections found in males from the ages of 15-34, while a total 251 infections is detected among females. 

Other infections were also detected within the ages of 35-54 of 493 among males and 206 for females, respectively. 

Ages of 55 years and older account for 188 males and 83 females, representing a total of 1,166 among males and a total of 605 among females, out of the total cumulative COVID-19 pandemic cases of 1,771.

The COVID-19 epi-curve continues to show a dramatic increase of COVID-19 cases since the two lockdowns, which accounted for 168 COVID-19 cases combined. 

Regrettably, Liberia’s epi-curves between October 18-24, 2020, re-emerged with a progressive increment of COVID-19 cases with an unprecedented spark within less than three months to an unimaginable 106 COVID-19 cases, sparking an overwhelming demand for the adherence to the Health protocols set-forth by the government of Liberia and its partners which are currently in place by ensuring avoidance of crowded places and gatherings, wearing of noise-mask, washing of hands regularly and voluntary COVID-19 testing. 

Into this second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Incident Management System, with support from its partners, including the Lebanese Community in Liberia, has opened a COVID-19 testing center at the Union Building, Sophie road, next to the beach, oldest Congo town, to scale-up testing for travelers and the general public, including testing for incoming travelers at the Roberts international Airport, and enhanced surveillance COVID-19 sample testing within counties and communities across the country.

Currently the COVID-19 Incident Management System has approved a travel protocol for outgoing and incoming travelers, with considerable payment of Seventy-Five United States (US$75) for both outgoing and incoming travelers, as compared with other countries within the subregion, to under-write overhead cost of the COVID-19 response efforts. 

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to threaten the survival and health conditions of all within the borders of Liberia. Currently, Liberia has a total of thirteen COVID-19 treatment units across the country, with two each in Margibi and Nimba counties, and nine in Montserrado County.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a toll on Liberia with 83 total cumulative deaths. The deaths occurred in various communities and health facilities.

Bong County accounts for a total of five deaths with four at health facilities and one in the community. 

In Gbarpolu County death at the facility, while Lofa County accounts for eleven deaths, with six at the health facility and five at the community. 

Maryland County also accounts for two deaths at the facility level, while Margibi County reports six deaths, with two at the COVID-19 treatment unit and four at the health facility. 

Montserrado County, the epicenter of the COVID-19 accounts for 44 deaths, with nine at the COVID-19 treatment Unit, 19 at the health facility, and 16 at the community levels. 

Nimba County also reported a total of 11 deaths — two at the COVID-19 treatment unit, five at the health facility, and four at the community level. 

Rivercess County additionally reported two deaths, both at health a facility and community, while Sinoe county accounts for one death at the health facility level. 

The COVID-19 response efforts also have a devastating effect on health workers. A total of 219 cases of COVID-19 was detected among health workers, while five health workers died.

Currently, Liberia has nine counties responding to interrupt COVID-19 cases. The counties are Maryland County with 33 cases, while River-Gee County has 36 COVID-19 cases. Nimba County has a total of 67 new cases, while Bong County has 39 new cases. Grand Bassa has 58 new cases, while Margibi has 85 new cases and Lofa County, 85 new COVID-19 cases. 

Montserrado county continues to be the epicenter of COVID-19 in Liberia, with a total of 1320 new cases as of December 15, 2020.

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