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The Government of Samoa has this morning confirmed reports the country has recorded its first positive test for a case of coronavirus.
The Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi confirmed one patient in a quarantine facility had tested positive to the virus last night, he said in a live address to the nation.
But a second, confirmatory test had come back negative when conducted about 6am on Thursday, the Prime Minister said.
The man is a sailor who arrived in Samoa on a repatriation flight from Auckland last Friday.
He has been placed in an isolation ward at Tupua Tamasese Motootua hospital.
The Prime Minister said the country would not take any chances that the man could transmit the virus to others.
Seventeen sailors, who had been stranded at overseas ports, arrived on the Friday flight and have been in quarantine with the close to 300 passengers.
Tuila'epa urged people not to panic and to heed advisories from the National Emergency Operations Centre and the Ministry of Health.
“Let us keep the faith and wear masks and wash our hands as advised,” he urged.
Officials have started the contact tracing process.
The Cabinet is meeting this afternoon to consider further safety measures as well as to review the first repatriation flight from Los Angeles next Friday.
Samoa is currently one of fewer than ten nation-states worldwide to have never recorded a positive case of the virus.
SOURCE: SAMOA OBSERVER/PACNEWS
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