Fiji’s COVID-19 new cases escalate to 279 with 4 deaths

Health authorities in Fiji have announced a new daily record of 279 new COVID-19 cases and four deaths as of 8am yesterday.

Ministry of Health’s Permanent Secretary, Dr James Fong said out of the new cases, 46 are from existing containment zones or quarantine facilities in Nadi.

The remaining 233 cases are from the Lami-Nausori Containment Zone which includes Suva.

Of this total, 196 cases are from existing areas of concern.

Dr Fong added that this means they are either from known clusters or they have a potential link to an existing case.

All 279 of these new patients are currently in isolation at home or in a facility.

Doctor Fong says the first two deaths were announced yesterday as being under investigation to determine if they were caused by COVID-19.

The first death was a 57-year-old man who was admitted to the CWM Hospital for a pre-existing non-COVID medical condition.

Doctor Fong said the man tested positive for COVID-19 during his admission.

The second was a 66-year-old woman who was declared dead on arrival to the Emergency Department at CWM Hospital.

In accordance with protocol, the woman was swabbed and tested positive for COVID-19.

Their doctors have now confirmed that COVID-19 caused the deaths of both these individuals.

Doctor Fong said the third death was a 62-year-old man from Nausori.

He was referred to the CWM Hospital on Tuesday from Nausori Health Centre in severe respiratory distress.

He added that the man had obvious signs and symptoms of severe COVID-19 and he tested positive later in the day. Despite the efforts of the medical team at CWM Hospital, he died on Tuesday afternoon.

The Permanent Secretary said the fourth death is a 77-year-old woman who had been admitted at CWM Hospital for a pre-existing non-COVID medical condition.

She tested positive during her admission and died yesterday. Her doctors have confirmed that she died due to COVID-19.

There are nine other patients admitted at CWM Hospital with severe cases of COVID-19. One of these patients is a 30-year-old with no pre-existing illness.

Doctor Fong said 24 days ago they locked down CWM Hospital to protect its vulnerable patient population.

He said these newly admitted COVID cases are exactly why they made that decision.

There are now 1892 active cases in Fiji.  There were 18 recoveries in 24-hours to 8am yesterday (Tuesday).

Photo: Fiji’s Permanent Secretary for Health, Dr James Fong.