By Charlotte Smith
Bladen County Health & Human Services Director, Dr. Terri Duncan confirmed this week the mother county’s first case of confirmed COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Today Southeastern Regional Medical Center announced its first cases of the virus in the facility.
As of 11 a.m. Saturday, April 4, the North Carolina Health & Human Services website is reporting 2,402 COVID-19 cases and 24 related deaths in the state. The website had 12 counties left unshaded with no confirmed cases of the Coronavirus. They are Avery, Camden, Graham, Hyde, Jackson, Jones, Madison, Pender, Richmond, Swain, Tyrell, and Yancey counties.
Bladen County continues to have only one confirmed COVID-19 case, according to the official site. On April 2, Dr. Duncan announced the first case in Bladen County. She stated, “The individual requires hospitalization at this time and is doing well.”
The positive individual had traveled to another state, a known hotspot for COVID-19. The Health Department will work to identify close contacts, which the Center for Disease Control defines as being within approximately 6 feet of a person with a COVID-19 infection for 10 minutes or longer. Based on the information provided, county public health officials will assess risks of exposure, and determine which, if any, additional measures are needed such as temperature and symptom checks, quarantine and/or testing upon discharge.
BladenOnline.com asked follow-up questions in regards to the confirmed case. Dr. Duncan responded by stating, “The press release of Bladen’s first positive case was issued following confidentiality laws and no further information may be given due to the sensitive nature of communicable disease.”
Community transfer of COVID-19 is widespread in N.C. and most likely in Bladen County, according to Duncan.
The Bladen County Health Department urges people to continue social distancing, before going out. Ask these questions before venturing out, “Is this necessary? Is this traveling worth the risk?”
Bladen County Health Department will follow CDC and NCDPHHS guidelines for monitoring, testing, surveillance, and response of COVID-19. Health Department staff are trained to monitor and respond to public health hazards, according to Duncan.
Closing in her statement, Dr. Duncan said, “Our motto: “ Prevent, Promote and Protect” is our goal. We strive through public health principals and practices to decrease the number of people infected and deaths from this virus, as we do for other diseases throughout the year.”
Dr Michael Zappa, with Cape Fear Valley in the following video gives updates on current statistics, new information about wearing mask and COVID-19 symptoms.Share: