Fiji's second COVID-19 case recorded

March 21, 2020 3:15 pm

Fiji now has its second case of COVID-19 and this is the mother of the first patient, says Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.

The flight attendant who tested positive on Thursday had come into contact with his family members and this is now the first case of local transmission.

11 members of the man’s family were isolated and transported to Nadi, where the mother developed the symptoms her results came back positive today.

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“Once isolated, household displaying symptoms, were all tested for COVID-19. Within isolation the patient’s mother has since tested positive for COVID-19, making this the first locally transmitted case in the country.”

The first patient remains isolated at Lautoka Hospital and is in stable condition.

The Prime Minister says the family members range from ages between one and 57 and remain in isolation.

Bainimarama says this has narrowed down her coming into contact with anyone as she developed symptoms in isolation.

“She developed symptoms soon after entering isolation in Nadi Hospital. This is a good thing as this greatly reduces the likelihood that she transmitted the virus before isolation. Regardless we are widening our contact tracing to identify anyone, who she was in contact within 24 hours before isolation.”

These individuals will be quarantined and monitored as well.

The Prime Minister says the woman posed no risk to anyone in Nadi as she was only in Lautoka and transported safely to Nadi Hospital and hence the boundaries of the Lautoka confined area will not be widened.

Bainimarama says those including foreign nationals who came into contact with flight attendant will have to remain isolated.

“We have even stopped foreign nationals who might have been in contact with our first COVID-19 positive patient, from boarding any flights, given that they could pose a threat to other travellers and members of our airport staff and flight crews. Instead, they must remain in Fiji under strict self-quarantine for the 14-day period after which they will be allowed to return home.

The PM also reminding people to adhere to the confinement rule, as most were trying to push the boundaries.

“Whether you are a local or a foreign national, if you are in the Lautoka confinement area, you will need to stay within the confined area. It does not matter if you from mars, for at least the next 12 days, you will be required to stay in the Lautoka confined area.”

The Prime Minister says the testing on people who had come into contact with the first patient is continuing.

“Tracing efforts for both patients will continue, as we know the first patient was a flight attendant, we are contacting, monitoring and quarantining individual present in Fiji, who may have had contact with the patient, including on flights he serviced and in social settings prior to his isolation. So far all COVID-19 tests we have on other patients through our contact tracing have come back negative.”

He is reminding all Fijians to follow procedures put in place.

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