Fiji ready to fight against new COVID-19 variant

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, November 28, 2021
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SUVA, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- Fiji's Health Minister Ifereimi Waqainabete said Fiji's internal and external measures are in place to mitigate the effects of the new COVID-19 variant Omicron.

Public health safety measures and vaccination are vital in the continuous fight against the deadly virus, he said.

According to a statement issued by the health ministry late Sunday, the Fijian government has strengthened entry restrictions for incoming travelers from "red list" countries including several southern African states in response to the new COVID-19 variant.

The minister said Fiji has installed stricter pre-departure protocols for more countries.

The Fijian government will maintain entry conditions for tourism arrivals from "travel partner" countries, including full vaccination with an approved COVID-19 vaccine, a negative COVID-19 PCR test result taken 72 hours prior to departure and a two-night stay in a certified hotel. It also includes an additional COVID-19 test on the second day after arrival.

Fiji's Permanent Secretary for Health James Fong said the same conditions apply for returning residents as well as visiting friends and relatives, with the exception that they are required to spend three nights after arrival in a certified hotel.

As an island nation with a population of around 900,000, Fiji has in recent weeks re-opened its international borders for fully vaccinated travelers.

From Nov. 11 through Dec. 1 this year, Fiji will only accept fully vaccinated permit holders, Fijian passport holders, returning residents and travelers approved by the COVID Risk Mitigation Taskforce (CRMT).

These travelers will be required to undertake a three-day quarantine in a Fiji Managed Quarantine (FMQ) facility and will be subject to RT-PCR tests 72 hours pre-departure and in-country.

From Dec. 1, Fiji will open to all fully vaccinated travelers from "travel partner" countries including New Zealand, Australia, Britain and the United States.

Currently, 90.6 percent of the adult target population in Fiji have been fully vaccinated while 97.3 percent have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Fiji reported its first confirmed COVID-19 case on March 19 last year, with a total of more than 52,000 confirmed cases and 696 deaths so far.

Health authorities warned of a third wave of COVID-19 outbreak in the country because of excessive gatherings over Christmas and New Year. Enditem

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