1 Apr 2020

Nauru's Covid-19 preparations boosted

10:34 pm on 1 April 2020

Nauru's Covid-19 preparations are set for a boost with Taiwan donating a testing machine.


Nauru Photo: AFP or licensors

Since declaring a State of Disaster, Nauru had also received aid from other partners to respond to the pandemic.

Nauru's government said "the gold standard" testing machine would significantly reduce weeks of waiting time for testing in Australia.

It said Australia had provided about $US60,000 for the purchase of testing kits and the World Health Organisation had supplied personal protective equipment.

This included 7000 sets of gloves, 13,000 surgical masks and 200 surgical gowns.

In addition, Taiwan was funding Nauru's procurement of a second thermal imaging scanner to check incoming passengers for fever.

No cases of the virus have been confirmed in Nauru.

Nauru had already purchased a thermal scanner and six hand-held temperature checkers for its airport at a cost of $US20,000.

Additional scanners would be placed at the seaport and hospital.

Nauru Airlines had suspended all passenger flights except for a fortnightly return service to Brisbane.

Freight flights continue as normal but all ships must spend 14 days at sea without contact with other vessels before entering Nauru's port.

Two passenger flights had landed in Nauru since the disaster declaration on 16 March.

Forty-six passengers and four crew from the first flight on 20 March were taken to "designated residences" for 14 days of quarantine.

Fifty-two passengers from the second flight on 21 March had been isolated at the Budapest Hotel.

Any passengers who have travelled from or transited through Europe, Asia (except Taiwan), the United States or Iran were not permitted to enter Nauru.

President Lionel Aingimea said no cases of the coronavirus had been detected in Nauru.

"We are doing all that is necessary to ensure we remain free and if it does not come to our shores we are ready to meet it and contain it."

Lionel Aingimea

Nauru President Lionel Aingimea Photo: Nauru Government