Dr Fong said while Fiji was in the endemic phase and there was no need to panic, it was best to act on the side of caution than be complacent
05 Jul 2022 12:34
Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Dr. James Fong. Photo: Ronald Kumar.

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services has urged the general public to strengthen its COVID safe measures and protocols in light of a slight surge in cases recently.

During an address to the media yesterday, Permanent Secretary for Health and Medical Services Dr James Fong urged community leaders to see to it that masking up and sanitising was observed where necessary.

Between June 23 and June 30, news cases saw a sudden surge. June 23 had 104 new cases, June 27 had 95 new cases and June 30 recorded 158.


Dr Fong said while Fiji was in the endemic phase and there was no need to panic, it was best to act on the side of caution than be complacent.

“We must be able to engage in the proper behaviour that will keep us COVID safe when we need it,” he said.

“There is no need to panic, the whole purpose of living with COVID-19 is to be able to do the right thing at the right time even when you are told to do it. That is our major objective.


“So that means it’s within our own hands, to be able to include COVID safe behaviour as part of our natural behaviour, ensure that we are vaccinated and if we do feel sick get yourselves to a hospital to be seen early, take isolation processes seriously and if you are sick don’t pass it to someone else.

“I have also narrated it out to the work- places and community leaders that in their area of control, I am hoping that they will endeavour to mandate the required measures as they see appropriate.

“If we do that, we will live with this virus for as long as it will be with us without having to require lockdowns.”


Hospitals, Health Centres

In light of this caution, strict COVID-safe measures will once be reintroduced at hospitals and health centres nationwide.

At the CWM Hospital for instance, visitation will be limited.

“We are not closing the hospital,” he said.

“What we are doing is we are restricting the number of visitors who can go in.

“We are bringing back some of our safety measures for screening people who come into the hospital.”


“We are also endeavouring this in every single hospital that when a staff interacts with a patient we need to take the appropriate COVID safe measures.’

“A lot of people are testing positive in hospitals and they are not admitted for COVID, they are admitted for something else but they are testing positive.”

“What we are doing in the hospital now is dividing the positive ward from the negative ward. With a lot more hand sanitization and masking.”

He said once the number of positive cases drop, the ministry would start removing these measures from the hospital.


International Border

As far as the international border was concerned, Dr Fong said: “It doesn’t make sense for us to target the borders.”


Vaccine Paediatric Doses

The COVID-19 paediatric doses for ages 11 to five children will begin rollout from tomorrow.

Dr Fong said there was a specific consenting process that was available online but the ministry was also deploying the consenting process to various stations across Fiji.



Dr Fong also confirmed that the six cases of measles that were tested positive by health officials were all stable.

He said the ministry was still conducting tests on close contacts of cases to identify if they had been transmitted as well.



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