13 Aug 2020

Fiji ponders the use of non-govt sites for quarantine

7:17 am on 13 August 2020

Fiji's Health Ministry says it may replicate its Covid-19 quarantine conditions at other non-government sites.

Currently there are about 275 people in quarantine facilities managed by health and military officials.

The Permanent Secretary for Health, Dr James Fong, said there had been requests made for the ministry to use the similar quarantine conditions at other non-government sites.

"The decision to do this is guided by very strict criteria," he said.

"The main consideration for us is how far we want to spread our resources. The army (RFMF) see the facility or the area that they need to quarantine.

"They work out the logistics of manning that area and they tell us whether or not that area is suitable and can serve as a quarantine facility."

Dr Fong said the ministry was working with the military on maintaining the strict protocols at the quarantine facilities.

The military said since 11 August, 47 soldiers had been stationed at various quarantine facilities in the Western Division.

In a statement, Army Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto said the soldiers were monitoring more than 200 people who had yet to complete their 28-day quarantine period.

Naupoto said the soldiers ensured people followed the requirements set out by the health ministry.

Acting Permanent Secretary for Health, James Fong

Acting Permanent Secretary for Health, James Fong Photo: Fiji Govt

Meanwhile, Dr Fong said there were now six active Covid cases in Fiji.

He said this followed the recovery and release of two people in isolation this week.

He said the rest of the patients were stable and remain in isolation at the hospitals.

On 1 August, Fiji recorded its first death of the pandemic when a 66-year-old farmer died in border quarantine.

The man had returned home after he underwent surgery in India.