By Nelson Manneh
Dr. Mustapha Bittaye the Director of Health Services at the Ministry of Health on Monday, the 20th April 2020, informed the media that five (5) persons are discharged from quarantine upon completion of their mandatory stay and testing negative for COVID-19.
He said there is a total of 71 contacts of newly confirmed cases treated and, currently, the country has 90 persons under quarantine, seven active cases and no probable case.
The Gambia confirmed its first case of the novel Coronavirus disease on the 17th of March 2020.
“Globally, since 31st December 2019 and as of the 19th April 2020, a total of 2,405,325 cases of COVID 19 (in accordance with the applied case definitions in the affected countries) have been reported. Of these, 164,930 deaths were registered and 624, 911 recovered from the disease,” he said.
Dr. Bittaye said Senegal recorded 367 confirmed cases, 220 recoveries and 3 deaths.
“Currently we are having 90 people on quarantine. A total of 332 tests were conducted and 10 were positive. 261 people completed quarantine, 373 contacts traced and 310 people completed follow-ups,” he said.
The Director of Health Services at the Ministry of Health said the next step the Ministry of Health will embark on is the Department of Social Welfare and other actors to work on modalities of receiving Quranic students returning from Senegal.
“Expand the testing criteria to test more people from all regions in the country. Conduct more step down trainings at regional and facility levels,” he said.
Dr. Bittaye said they plan to strengthen RRT and contact tracing teams in all regions and establish isolation centres in all major health facilities and hospitals.
“The other step is the enforcement of the letter and spirit of the restriction orders contained in the State of Emergency declared and thorough tracing of contacts of newly confirmed,” he noted.
Dr. Bittaye said they want to recognize and appreciate the role of creative artists such as musicians, drama groups, poets, singers, students and other cultural groups in sensitizing the public about the pandemic.
“We appeal to them to consult the Ministry of Health through the Directorate of Health Promotion and Education for guidance on their message related to COVID-19,” he said.