Fiji faces 1220 new covid cases, seven deaths as infections still rise

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Ongoing health checks in Fiji
Health checks are ongoing in Fiji in an effort to combat the covid-19 pandemic. Image: RNZ/Fiji govt

RNZ Pacific

Covid-19 infections continue to rise in Fiji with 1220 new cases recorded in the last 24 hours to 8am yesterday.

The government also confirmed seven more deaths, bringing the toll to 261.

That compares with 1100 cases and 13 deaths in the previous 24-hour period.

Health Secretary Dr James Fong said the seven deaths were reported between 31 July 31 and 2 August.

He said all but two of the victims were not vaccinated.

Dr Fong said six of the victims were in the Central Division and one in the Western Division.

  • A 24-year-old man from Tailevu presented to a medical facility in severe respiratory distress. A medical team brought him to the Colonial War Memorial Hospital in Suva on 1 August. He died on his way to the hospital. His family reported that he was experiencing shortness of breath one week prior to his presentation to the health centre.
  • A 78-year-old man from Kalabu in Nasinu died at home on 1 August.
  • An 85-year-old woman from Nasinu died at home on 2 August.
  • A 67-year-old woman from Nabua had died at home on 1 August.
  • A 65-year-old man from Sigatoka was declared dead on arrival by the attending medical officer at the Sigatoka Sub-Divisional Hospital. Dr Fong said this means the man had died either at home or on his way to the hospital.
  • A 48-year-old woman from Nabena village died at home on 2 August. Her family reported that she had a cough, fever, shortness of breath and chest pain for a week before her death.
  • A 54-year-old man from Cunningham died at home on 31 July.
Fiji's Chief Medical Adviser Jemesa Tudravu
Fiji’s Chief Medical Adviser Jemesa Tudravu … “all our major health facilities remain fully functional in all divisions.” Image: RNZ/Fiji govt

Three other people who tested positive to covid-19 had also died but their deaths have been classified as not caused by the virus.

Dr Fong said that out of the 1220 latest cases, 756 were from the Central Division while the rest are from the west.

He said there had been 1113 recoveries since the last update that meant there were now 22,689 active cases; 18,506 active cases in the Central Division and 4183 in the West.

Covid-patients on oxygen support, ventilators
Meanwhile, 64 covid patients are on oxygen support while three are on ventilators, Chief Medical adviser Dr Jemesa Tudravu said.

He said 332 infected people were admitted in hospital facilities, with 84 in a severe or critical condition.

A total of 384,200 individuals had been screened and 70,744 swabbed, Dr Tudravu said.

He also said all major health services were operational across the country.

Dr Tudravu said the ministry was concerned about the increase in the number of new cases and deaths in the country.

“In terms of health services, all our major health facilities remain fully functional in all divisions providing emergency services, admissions, and inpatient care for Covid and non-covid patients,” he said.

Dr Tudravu said a patient care-flow pathway has been established to ensure that all cases of Covid-19 are identified and followed up.

“This essentially means that if a patient is diagnosed with Covid-19, that patient will be directed to a care plan where the patient will be admitted at home and followed up through telehealth.

“They can also be admitted to an intermediate care facility such as the field hospital and cared for by our team or admitted at the main hospital for high-level care.”

Fiji now has 22,689 active cases in isolation and 261 deaths, 259 of them from the latest outbreak that began in April.

This article is republished under a community partnership agreement with RNZ.

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