Konjic became a COVID-19 hotspot, urgently needs an epidemiologist

NEWS 27.03.2020 12:52
Source: N1

Konjic has meanwhile become a hotspot for COVID-19 and the local Civil Protection Authority has appealed to higher government levels to help in the efforts to contain the virus in the small town which has no active epidemiologist at the moment while the local hospital lacks a department for infectious diseases.

The town of Konjic has become a local epicentre of COVID-19, the Konjic Civil Protection official Fadil Tatar said on Friday, explaining that local health authorities are doing whatever they can to contain the virus and prepare for the worst.

“The Civil Protection Headquarters has organised a laboratory in the building of an old motel and the rooms are ready but we have no person who is trained to lead the entire process,” he said, explaining that their local epidemiologist is currently in self-isolation as her husband tested positive for the virus.

Local authorities are now trying to get a retired epidemiologist from the town of Jablanica to come and help.

“We have no other solutions, we are doing what we can,” Tatar said.

More than 20 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Konjic by now but not enough were tested as local health institutions lack the means to do so.

The latest four cases were confirmed on Friday morning.

It is believed that the outbreak began at a party organised by the local military industry company ‘Igman’ on March 11th. Several employees of the company had earlier tested positive for the virus.

A guest from Serbia who tested positive for the virus attended the event. After the general manager of the company, Djahid Muratbegovic, tested positive to COVID-19, ‘Igman’ halted production for a two-week period.

Muratbegovic's personal driver passed away on Monday as a consequence of the coronavirus infection.

The company said on Thursday it has provided 200 protective suits, 10,000 masks and other equipment to the local hospitals and other health institutions and has paid for the purchase of 3,000 coronavirus tests which are expected to arrive on March 30th. It said it is also currently trying to acquire a respirator.

“About 50 people should now urgently be tested, their samples should be taken and that would solve the first wave, the first group of people who had contact with the person from Serbia,” Tatar said.