Fort Bragg has its first case of coronavirus

By RACHAEL RILEY | The Fayetteville Observer | Published: March 17, 2020

Read more coronavirus coverage from Stars and Stripes.

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (Tribune News Service) — Fort Bragg officials announced the installation's first case of the coronavirus Tuesday.

A Department of the Army civilian who works at the installation tested positive for the new virus, called COVID-19, and is in isolation, officials said.

Officials said the civilian is a Harnett County resident and counted as a positive case for Harnett County.

To comply with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act and protect the employee's privacy, Fort Bragg officials cannot release additional information about what area of the post the employee works, a Fort Bragg spokesman said.

"At this time, our plan is to not release any identifiable information on any individual from Fort Bragg who has tested positive for COVID-19," said Tom McCollum, a Fort Bragg spokesman.

The employee is isolated at their home in Harnett County, McCollum said.

"The individual's chain of command and or supervisors are aware and are taking the appropriate actions in protecting and monitoring their units and or work force," he said.

Harnett County has four presumptive positive cases, or cases awaiting final Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmation, county officials there have said.

Womack Army Center's Department of Public Health notified state public health authorities of the positive test.

"Fort Bragg will continue to take the necessary precautions to maintain readiness and protect our community," said Lt. Gen. Michael "Erik" Kurilla, commander of the 18th Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg's senior commander. "We will make risk-informed decisions, based on facts and analysis as the situation continues to change."

Officials said the installation will continue to work with interagency partners to mitigate the effects of the virus for soldiers, families and surrounding communities.

Fort Bragg leaders are taking questions about the coronavirus during a virtual town hall meeting Wednesday.

The virtual town hall is scheduled for noon to 12:30 p.m. and will be broadcast on the installation's Facebook page.

Fort Bragg senior leaders, representatives from Womack Army Medical Center and garrison officials will address changes at Fort Bragg related to the coronavirus, officials said.

"Our intent will be to hold these periodically to provide you updates directly from the installation leadership," officials said.

Questions can be submitted on the Fort Bragg Facebook page.

Staff writer Rachael Riley can be reached at rriley@fayobserver.com or 910-486-3528.

©2020 The Fayetteville Observer (Fayetteville, N.C.)
Visit The Fayetteville Observer (Fayetteville, N.C.) at www.fayobserver.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

from around the web