Ministry to focus on targeted testing

July 21, 2021 7:10 pm

The Ministry of Health has noted an increase in demand for testing as people continue to contract COVID-19.

Permanent Secretary for Health, Doctor James Fong says this has prompted new action from the public.

He adds that they will now target testing where the result would make a difference to the outcome of a patient especially those with severe COVID-19 cases.

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“If you develop any COVID-19 symptoms during this 14-day period, such as cough, runny nose, sore throat, fever, loss of taste or smell body ache and headache. You must almost certainly assume that you have COVID-19 and you should just self-isolate. Most people infected with COVID-19 will have only a mild symptom and fully recovered.”

Dr Fong says this is in particular for those in the Suva-Nausori containment zone.

He says for those in high-risk areas, will be prioritizing the turnaround for the result.

The Permanent Secretary says that at the national level, testing is averaging 4.3 tests per 1000 population per day, and in Suva-Nausori 6 per 1000 population per day.

He says that at a population level Fiji is at similar testing rates to developed countries like Australia, and the state of New South Wales, which also has an outbreak.

The Ministry is working on increasing its testing capacity by establishing a new Fiji CDC lab for Nadi in August.

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