"Capture & Contain" strategy continues to keep Nauru Covid-19 free

Authorities in Nauru have advised a landing craft to remain drifting and quarantine for 10 days after a crew member returned a weak positive result for Covid-19.

The case was identified at the border.

The landing craft “Krishnan’ was in quarantine at sea for two weeks and there has been no unprotected contact with anyone on Nauru.

President Lionel Aingimea said it appears likely that this is a historical case who was most probably infected a few weeks ago when two members of that vessel's crew tested positive whilst in Fiji.

“The infected crew were taken off the vessel at that time, earlier this month, and all remaining crew were tested and returned negative results. They were then cleared by Fiji authorities to begin their voyage to Nauru,” Aingimea said in a statement.

The "Krishnan" departed Lautoka, Fiji on 6 November with a crew of ten outbound for Nauru.

The landing craft is carrying 98 water tanks on board destined for the Nauru Community.

“The vessel spent more than 14 days at sea and without any contact with any other vessel or port, before approaching our Port in Aiwo, as per our Maritime Covid procedures, ”Aingimea said.

The “Krishnan” completed its 14 days quarantine on Friday and the crew was tested for Covid-19 on Monday, 22 November.

“Late on Monday, we were advised that one crew member returned a weak positive result.”

“This crew member and all others have all remained well and have had no symptoms since leaving Fiji.”

The President said the lab results suggest that this person was probably infected earlier in November and is no longer contagious.

“The crew member is also fully vaccinated which may also explain why the test result was so weak and further reinforces that it is very unlikely that the crew member is contagious.”




“Nauru Public Health will remotely review all crew each day for any symptoms or signs of infection and the crew will be re-tested on the 10th day.”

“According to WHO guidelines, if a person who tests positive to COVID but has no symptoms for 10 days, then the research shows they are no longer contagious and they cannot spread the virus and WHO guidelines releases them from any restrictions.”

“Regardless of that low risk, we have decided to delay operations with this vessel until we are further reassured that there is no risk of Covid entering Nauru,” Aingimea said.

The Taskforce and Public Health teams will monitor and provide updates as needed.

“As the world moves to a new and different approach to living with Covid and many countries, including Australia and Fiji, accepting that Covid will be endemic and that we just need to live with it around us all the time, we need to expect and not be surprised if we begin to catch more cases on our border.”

“However, if we either continue to contain these cases at the border, or ensure we have everyone protected by vaccination, including our children, then we should no longer be scared by cases being picked up at the border.” Aingimea said.

“In fact, we should be happy and celebrate that this shows our systems are working, our Public Health teams are getting the swabs, our Lab is doing the tests, and our Taskforce and Health Department are on top of every issue all the time,” he added.


Photo file  Caption: Nauru President Lionel Aingimea