Three new COVID-19 cases confirmed at Fort Bliss, including two civilians

By DANIEL BORUNDA | El Paso Times | Published: March 26, 2020

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(Tribune News Service) — There are now seven confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Fort Bliss, military officials announced Wednesday evening.

The three new cases are two civilian Department of Defense employees and another person, 1st Armored Division acting commander Col. Matthew Eichburg said in an online town hall meeting.

The three new cases on the Army post are in addition to the four previously announced cases, all U.S. Army reservists with the 77th Human Resources Company out of New York City.

All patients are in isolation, Eichburg said.

The new COVID-19 cases were announced as Fort Bliss on Wednesday evening raised its public health alert status to Health Protective Condition Charlie and started more restrictions.

HPCon Charlie is intended to help stop the spread of COVID-19, the highly contagious respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

Fort Bliss is only requiring "mission essential personnel" to physically report for duty. Other staff will work remotely from home.

Some entrance gates onto the military installation have been closed. Visitor passes are restricted.

Only military personnel, on-post residents, military retirees and veterans needing essential services will be allowed on post, according to information released by Fort Bliss.

Additional screenings for COVID-19 will take place at the gates to enter the Army post, authorities said.

Other social distancing measures to help stop the spread of the coronavirus had already been implemented, including suspending public religious services, closing stores and screening visitors before they enter William Beaumont Army Medical Center.

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