Two people arrived to Vanuatu from New Caledonia on 22 October 2021 and were confirmed to have active COVID-19 infections. Medical assessment has confirmed that one person is no longer contagious and presents zero risk of transmitting COVID-19 to others since they no longer have the COVID-19 virus. This person is now classified as recovered from COVID-19 and therefore will be discharged from the isolation ward at Vila Central Hospital to safely join their family and community.
Discharge from isolation for this person was delayed to enable the medical team to conduct further investigations to confirm the COVID-19 infection status. They were therefore held for an extended period until the medical team could conclude they were fully recovered and provide health clearance. This one person is considered as a recovered case because they no longer have virus in their body and pose no risk of COVID-19 infection to anyone else. The second person who remains in isolation requires additional medical assessment to confirm they are recovered and therefore not contagious before they can be released from isolation.
We can consider that these cases of COVID-19 delta variant have been successfully contained and managed in quarantine and isolation, with no close contact with anyone throughout the entire process of arrival, quarantine and isolation. Quarantine physically separates people who are well but may have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus from others. Isolation physically separates people who are sick with COVID-19 from those who are not sick. Additional days of quarantine or isolation are not needed for the Delta variant of COVID-19. All health staff involved in the management and care of people in the isolation ward are regularly tested to ensure they remain negative for COVID-19.
We can be confident in our processes and protocols as well as the capacity of all staff supporting quarantine and isolation. They have continued to ensure the safety of the community from COVID-19. To date there have been no COVID-19 cases detected in the community and no evidence of community transmission.
Efate and Offshore Islands therefore remain at Alert Level 1 (Medium risk) due to one case still in isolation. Everywhere else in Vanuatu remains at Alert Level 0 (Low risk).
Everyone is encouraged to seek information from official sources only and to avoid spreading rumours or misinformation. Please see the Ministry of Health website at www.covid19.gov.vu or the Health Promotions Vanuatu Facebook page or dial the 119 Health Information Hotline.
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