From Blessing Ibunge, ort Harcourt
Rivers State government has commenced investigation to trace all contacts of the 61-year old hotel manager who tested positive to coronavirus making it third index case in the state.
The state Commissioner for Health, Professor Princewill, who briefed journalists on the development on Wednesday in Port Harcourt, disclosed that the index case had attended to his boss when he returned from Abuja in February and mysteriously died.
He said that the 61-year old had been evacuated to a treatment centre for further management while his contacts would be adequately traced.
“You are aware of the COVID -19 pandemic in the world with over 2.3 million confirmed cases globally. The number for Nigeria has also continued to rise in the last few weeks with a total of 782 confirmed cases as at yesterday. The first two cases that were diagnosed in the State has been discharged home and have reunited with their families.
“Yet we have continued to follow up travelers and persons of person of Interest as well as several alerts and rumors reaching the State Public Health Emergency Operations Centre. In line with our targeted case search, one of the 5 results received yesterday night for Rivers state was positive for COVID-19.
“A 61-year old Hotel Manager who had attended to his boss, the owner of Mingi Suites who returned from Abuja in February, 2020. The rapid response team was notified of the sudden and mysterious death of the owner of the hotel last week and decided to place all his contacts under watch. Once the testing guidelines were expanded, samples were collected from the hotel manager for COVID testing and his result is the positive sample for COVID-19 in the State.
“He is currently being evacuated to the treatment center for further management and all his contacts and timelines will be adequately followed up including necessary environmental decontamination as the case may be.
“Contact tracing has commenced and samples will becollected form his high risk contacts for RT-PCR analysis while risk communication and community engagement will continue unabated as usual. Be rest assured, no stone will be left unturned”.
He dismissed insinuation that people could walk in for a test without being in contact with suspected COVID-19 patient.
The 61-year-old hotel manager is the third case recorded in the state. The first and second cases were 19 year old model and 62 year old retiree respectively, who tested positive. The two were treated, tested negative and discharged.