Families happily reunited after 14-day quarantine
There were smiles all around on Wednesday morning for families reunited with their loved ones after they were isolated and quarantined for 14 days.
Returning Samoans who came back two weeks ago were forced to undergo a mandatory two-week quarantine as part of the coronavirus pandemic State of Emergency lockdown.
St. Therese Retreat and Accommodation was among the venues used, including Hotel Moanalisa, Orator Hotel, Samoa Traditional Resort and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at Mulifanua.
At St. Therese on Wednesday morning, families turned up at 8am to finally meet their loved ones whom they were not allowed to see since they touched down on an Air New Zealand flight two weeks ago.
Among them was a relieved husband, Loa Maligi, who woke up at around 4am just to get ready to pick up his wife.
“The time spent apart was never easy,” he said.
Mr. Maligi added that mothers play a critical role in every family.
“There is always a feeling that the family as a whole is incomplete when the mother is not around.
“My son and I missed my wife dearly hence why even though we knew the pickup time was around 9am but we woke up so early due to excitement and a feeling of relief.
“We also acknowledge the Government’s decision in trying to keep our country safe through these preventative measures.”
He added that the release of his wife is a reason to celebrate.
“Before, I would rate my happiness at 40 per cent but now it has reached 100 per cent.
“Our family will wait until we are safe from the virus so we can have a family gathering because we understand that the Government at the moment prohibits public gatherings and celebrations in groups.
“During the time my wife was in quarantine my son was very sad because he missed his mother so much.”
Each person that was quarantined received a letter from the Ministry of Health pertaining to the reason behind their stay.
“You are now on the last stretch towards the end of your 14 day quarantine period – well done,” reads the letter.
“Thank you for your patience and commitment to see out this process.
“We acknowledge with deep gratitude your compliance with the quarantine conditions and sacrifice of being away from family, work and the comforts of home.”
The letter also stated that the purpose of the quarantine was to minimize the potential for COVID-19 to be introduced into the wider Samoan public.
“As we progress towards the end of the 14 days, we will be conducting a final medical screening of all persons in your room with your passport handy for this screening progress.
“If you should require a letter to confirm your confinement during this quarantine period, please indicate this to the team upon your screening or call one of the numbers below.
“It is important to note that though you have completed the quarantine period, it is advised that you still observe these crucial preventative measures at home: wear a mask if you are coughing or have other respiratory symptoms, or are in close contact with a person who has respiratory symptoms; wash your hands regularly with soap and clean water or alcohol-based hand rub (sanitizer); avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth; avoid gatherings of more than five people; clean frequently touched surfaces (door handles, phones etc.); isolate yourself immediately if you develop any respiratory symptoms including: fever, cough or difficulty breathing, and contact any of the following numbers, making sure to mention that you were recently quarantined.”