Five more positive cases in Samoa; Cabinet to meet Saturday

By Sialai Sarafina Sanerivi 21 January 2022, 10:44PM

The number of COVID-19 positive cases in Samoa has increased since Thursday, a senior Cabinet Minister has revealed. 

Speaking on the Soalepule programme on EFKS TV on Friday night, the Agricultural Minister, La'auli Leuatea Schmidt confirmed that more results came out positive on Friday evening.

He said five more passengers on the flight that flew in from Brisbane, Australia on Wednesday tested positive for COVID-19.

"But more details will be announced sometime soon by the National Emergency and Operation Center (N.E.O.C.)," La'auli told EFKS TV on Friday night.

The confirmation by the Cabinet Minister puts Samoa’s total number of positive cases at 15 thus far – all of them imported cases.

Samoa’s Cabinet will hold an urgent 8am Saturday to discuss a possible lockdown for the country, the Samoa Observer understands.

Attempts to get comments from the Chairman of N.E.O.C., Agafili Shem Leo have been unsuccessful as of press time. The Minister of Health Valasi Tafito Selesele could not be reached for a comment.

The infected passengers were among 73 local residents who flew into Samoa on Wednesday at 3.18pm from Brisbane. 

All passengers provided complete documentation as per travel advisory requirements for entry into Samoa before departure, the Director-General of Health, Leausa Dr. Take Naseri said in a media conference on Thursday. 

"Ten of the passengers tested positive upon arrival (4 males, 6 females)," said Leausa. 

"All the cases who are eligible to be vaccinated were fully vaccinated and had negative PCR test prior departure from Australia.

"Currently all positive cases are asymptomatic and in good health. They are currently in isolation in the isolation ward at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Moto'otua. 

"A total of 9 close contacts that were initially identified are being closely monitored. 

“Samples of cases will be sent to New Zealand on the next available flight for genome sequencing to determine the variant.

"All infection, prevention, and control protocols have been strictly followed by the health workers, response teams and staff at the airport, quarantine sites and isolation units.

"All passengers on this repatriation flight wore masks during the flight and during the airport operation and transportation to the quarantine sites.

“They have also been provided with prevention information to assist them to manage themselves and those in their care while in quarantine.”


By Sialai Sarafina Sanerivi 21 January 2022, 10:44PM
Samoa Observer

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