200 infections mark critical point for Fiji’s Ministry of Health: Dr Fong

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Fiji’s Ministry of Health is working on greater contingency measures after the COVID-19 cases soared to 105 Sunday.

This is Fiji’s biggest daily toll since the second wave of the pandemic began mid-April.

The majority of these cases are linked to the existing clusters, but Permanent Secretary for Health, Doctor James Fong, says they are watching these numbers with a concern.

Dr Fong explains in particular, this means looking at extensive contingency measures and also reviewing those that are already activated.

The Permanent Secretary has confirmed he will be seeking help from our Vuvale partners in this regard.

“And I am also looking at getting help from our partners in Australia to come and help us develop some of the contingency plans that are required in case we persistently get up to 200. So I am already planning up to that phase in case we get up to 200.”

Dr Fong stresses the public needs to keep engaging in all COVID safe measures.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama today received a donation of 300 thermal guns from Vodafone Fiji Limited and Telecom Fiji Limited. The thermal guns cost $19,500(US$9, 513) and the two companies each contributed $9,750(US$4,756) towards this initiative.

The in-kind donation is in response to the Prime Minister’s commitment in Parliament recently to support the Tailevu, Rewa and other provinces in the provision of personal protective equipment (PPEs).

“The private sector has an important role in Government’s response to defeat the virus,” said the Prime Minister.

He added that eliminating the virus requires a whole-of-society approach underpinned by multi-stakeholder partnership.

Bainimarama thanked both Vodafone and Telecom for rising to the call and in supporting Government’s efforts during the pandemic.

“This donation will significantly contribute to Government’s efforts to secure our villages, especially in the three provinces of Tailevu, Rewa and Naitasiri,” said the Prime Minister.

Vodafone Fiji Regional CEO, Pradeep Lal, agreed with the Prime Minister’s approach and stated that helping those in genuine need of PPEs at this time was a no-brainer. “We have a responsibility to give back to society and through this donation, we are fulfilling that obligation,” said Lal.

Telecom Fiji CEO, Charles Goundar, said that this assistance was the right thing to do at this time because it will help the communities in taking precautionary measures in order to save lives. “We are happy to assist, where possible, in supporting the efforts of Government to combat the spread of this virus,” said Goundar.

Earlier, the Prime Minister received a donation of 5,000 masks from Gold Rock Investment, which was distributed to the 14 provinces by the iTaukei Affairs Board. The Ministry of Health and Medical Services will provide sanitisers which will be distributed as well throughout the 14 provinces.

The Prime Minister conveyed his appreciation to the private sector and reiterated the importance of continuing important pandemic response related partnerships with the private sector in the containment of the recent COVID-19 outbreak and Government’s recovery efforts.

SOURCE: FBC NEWS/FIJI GOVT/PACNEWS