New Border Quarantine Cases – Media Release

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) is announcing three new border cases of COVID-19. They are a 32-year-old male and a 32-year-old female who arrived on flight GA8250 from New Delhi on December 21st; and a 34-year-old female who had traveled from England and arrived on flight FJ392 from Hong Kong on December 21st. All three tested positive during routine testing while undergoing mandatory quarantine in the government designated (and Republic of Fiji Military Forces supervised) border quarantine facilities in Nadi

These new cases have been safely and hygienically transferred to the isolation ward at the Lautoka hospital according to the standard protocol for confirmed cases. They have all been asymptomatic and well since this transfer. The frontline border and quarantine staff who were directly involved with the cases have followed our standard infection prevention and control protocols and will be monitored and tested as necessary.

On another arrival on flight FJ392 from Hong Kong on December 21st, a 31-year-old male, also tested positive during routine border quarantine testing. However, this person had already tested positive on two occasions prior to arriving in Fiji, during his travels in France and the United Kingdom from October-December. He remains symptom-free and is considered a historical case that will not be counted as a case for Fiji, as he has already been counted as a case in another country. It is known that non-infectious pieces of the virus can remain detectable, and cause a positive test result, long after the infection has passed; therefore it is unlikely that this person is currently infectious. However, as a precaution, he has been transferred to the isolation ward at Lautoka hospital according to our standard protocol.

Fiji has had 49 cases in total since our first case was detected on March 19th, with the last 31 cases detected in border quarantine. It has now been 255 days since the last case was detected outside border quarantine.

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services and our partner agencies at the borders continue to diligently enforce our border quarantine and infection control protocols, and therefore these border quarantine cases pose zero risks to the health and wellbeing of the Fijian public. I once again applaud the efforts of our Border Health Protection Unit, isolation ward staff, and our laboratory and surveillance team at Fiji CDC, in their tireless efforts to keep Fiji safe over the Christmas period.