Positive travellers from African states in quarantine

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Fiji currently have COVID-positive travellers in quarantine who arrived in the country from African states before we knew about Omicron.

Permanent Secretary for Health and Medical Services, Dr James Fong clarified this in his COVID-19 statement last night.

Dr Fong said these travellers have been quarantined in line with the stringent measures we apply to countries we consider a red zone for ongoing viral spread.

He said their specimens will be forwarded this week overseas for genetic sequencing.

“If transmissible enough, stringent border and community measures will only delay the inevitable entry and spread of current and future variants of the COVID 19 Virus.

“Fiji citizens will only be safe if we remain COVID safe with two metre physical distancing; mask wisely by carrying a mask when you are out of your home and wear the mask properly in public indoor spaces, public service vehicles, and outdoor crowded spaces; open windows to improve ventilation; avoid poorly ventilated or crowded spaces; keep hands clean; cough or sneeze into a bent elbow or tissue; and get vaccinated when it’s your turn.

“This message is more important than all the stringent public health community and border measures.”

Dr Fong said the ministry is continuing to improve public health and medical capacities to manage an increase in cases.

As such the remodelling of the health service provision will continue its current focus on:

*Community surveillance through test trace and track protocols is being escalated to help us identify and contain any outbreak early.

*Registration and line listing of vulnerable persons especially in poorly vaccinated areas has been done;
Preparations for the monitoring of positive cases and vulnerable persons to ensure better access to appropriate care plans has been made;

*Clinical care protocols for the severe disease has been reviewed and strengthened;

Meanwhile, Fiji has reported 26 new COVID-19 cases across the country in the past seven days.

Dr Fong said 19 cases were recorded in the Central division, five new cases in the Western division, one new case in the Eastern Division, and one new case in the Northern Division.

He said the Central Division cases constitute seen per cent of the cumulative total cases nationally, with the Western division making up 28 per cent and one per cent in the Northern and Eastern Divisions.

Dr Fong said since the last update, we have recorded 14 new cases of which nil new cases were recorded on November 30 and 12 new cases in the last 24 hours ending at 8 am this morning.

There was also one COVID-19 death, a 67-year-old female from the Central Division who died at home and was unvaccinated.

SOURCE: FIJI TIMES/PACNEWS