Last Updated on 4 weeks by Publishing Team
Widespread Vaccine Coverage Paves Way to Easing of COVID Restrictions
12 November 2021 –– SUVA, Fiji: In line with the Hon. Prime Minister’s announcement on 10 October 2021, fully-vaccinated Fijian citizens, residents, and permit holders traveling to Fiji from Travel Safe Countries no longer have a traditional quarantine requirement. Instead, after spending three days on the premises of a hotel under the new COVID-safe measures, a negative COVID-19 test result will clear them to enter the community.
Since April 2021, inter-island travel has been restricted and quarantine conditions have been in place to ensure that Fiji’s second wave of COVID-19 had limited spread beyond Viti Levu. This policy has been extremely successful in preventing any major outbreak in Vanua Levu and maritime island communities. In his announcement, the Hon Prime Minister also stated that the easing of the quarantine requirement and registration process for inter-island travel was contingent on wider vaccine coverage for Fijians in Vanua Levu and other islands.
As of today, 12th November 2021, the overall vaccination coverage for Vanua Levu and all maritime islands groups is now above 80%. Given this rate of vaccine coverage, the below changes will be implemented from 12th November 2021:
- Individuals can travel from Viti Levu to Vanua Levu and maritime islands and vice-versa under risk reduction protocols. This means the quarantine requirement will be removed. However, travel will be limited to fully vaccinated persons, passenger capacity on shipping vessels will be restricted, and additional measures will be taken to ensure that all COVID safe measures are stringently enforced during boarding and transit, and while disembarking.
- Registration of passengers will no longer be required before traveling.
Some parts of Fiji with lower vaccination coverage remain areas of concern, such as the province of Bua, which has an overall vaccination coverage below 80%. Specific travel advisories have been issued warning members of the public away from these communities. These areas can be found at the following link: https://bit.ly/3ln8jqx
Some of these areas of concern are in the maritime areas, where there are a number of communities with vaccination rates below 60%. It is expected that most of the second doses will be administered in these areas by mid-December provided weather conditions remain favorable. Until such time, risk mitigation measures will be issued to manage the risks presented by these communities.
Maritime communities with less than 60% double dose vaccine coverage will be red zoned and highlighted for ongoing escalated community engagement. Red zoned communities in maritime islands will be required to institute a 7-day quarantine protocol for incoming travelers subject to ongoing changes as advised by the Ministry of Health and Medical Services.
Our community engagement team will continue to ensure reliable access to vaccination and the best available medical information.
The Ministry of Health and Medical Services expects to fully vaccinate 90% of the eligible adult population in Fiji by tomorrow, 13 November 2021. Pending confirmation of the 90% threshold, the curfew hours will move from 12 am to 4 am from Sunday, 14th November 2021.