Liberia: Phebe Hospital Shuts Door to New Patients Due to Spike in COVID-19 Cases
Suakoko, Bong County – Phebe Hospital in Suakoko Bong County – the only referral hospital in central Liberia – has shut its doors to all news patients, for the second time in a month due to a spike in coronavirus virus cases in Bong County.
The hospital’s communication director Samuel Kplaiwru described the move as precautionary measure to ensure the safety of patients and staff.
“I am sorry that the hospital needed to do this, but at the end we will over come,” Kplaiwru said. “We need to ensure that we crush this virus and its source.”
It comes after the hospital’s medical director Jefferson Sibley and seven nurses have been tested for the virus.
Hospital closure leave patients stranded
More than 15 patients, many of whom had traveled to Gbarnga from the rural parts of Bong were left stranded after the hospital shut down Friday and withdrew all non-essential services.
A large number of patients were seen waiting outside, unaware of the closure of the hospital hoping to get treatment.
Morris Benson, 38, who was found waiting outside the hospital with his three-year-old child Blessing, told FPA: “If the hospital was scheduled to be closed Friday, why we were given appointment for today.”
As of June 25, 2020, Bong County had reported 22 cases of the virus, with four deaths reported, according to the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL).
On Thursday, Bong County superintendent Esther Walker suggested an increase in the may have been a consequence of the slight easing of the lockdown restrictions in the county, which had allowed people access to night clubs and gathering in large numbers