Health Ministry To Remain Vigilant To Avoid Second Wave Of Virus

Minister says its important to keep guard up to prevent second wave of the virus.
06 Jun 2020 09:04
Health Ministry To Remain Vigilant To Avoid Second Wave Of Virus
Nausori Market attendant, Kinisiana Livia stays safe by using a face mask. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Though Fiji has now been declared COVID-19-free, the Ministry of Health and Medical Services will not be letting its guard down. This is to avoid a second or third wave of the virus into the country.

The minister, Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete, said though being COVID-19-free was a milestone, the ministry would not rest on its laurels.

“It doesn’t mean that we should start celebrating and think that we are completely free of it; we need to ensure that the behavioural changes we have started, carry on,” Dr Waqainabete said.

“We need to do our part making sure that we continue with social distancing, personal and hand hygiene so that we make sure that we keep this at bay.” .

He said COVID-19 restrictions will still be in place as it was important to ensure that they reduce the risk of a second wave of the virus.

“Those processes that we have in place don’t change and we have to be mindful of the fact that all around the world COVID-19 still is prevailing and because of that we have to make sure that we continue with the guidelines we have in place and that does not change,” he said.

Medical staff quarantined

Dr Waqainabete said all doctors and nurses who were involved in the frontline looking after cases had started their period of self-isolation and quarantine.

“I have spoken with the sub divisional medical officer this morning just thanking them for holding the fort in all that they have done for being strong and making sure that they did what needs to be done in this important time.”

Dr Waqainabete added that more than 100 people were still in Government designated quarantine facilities as of yesterday.

He said they would be tested on Day 14 of their stay and would be released if they tested negative for COVID-19.

“I think we all need to understand that the restrictions Government has put in place continues, in terms of border restrictions, people put into designated quarantine facilities in terms of testing. The testing capacity has increased dramatically and we need to ensure that we as a nation are robust in terms of the processes around COVID-19.”

He said that the isolation facilities in Navua, Nadi and Lautoka would continue to be fumigated and sanitised in terms of their infection control measures that were in place.

“We will continue to do this to ensure that the disease is not spread.”

Edited by Jonathan Bryce


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