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WHO tells nations not to let guard down
05:51 am GMT+12, 29/04/2021, Fiji

s Fiji battles the B1617 variant of the COVID-19 virus, warning by health authorities need to be taken seriously, if Fijians are to make it out without a catastrophe.
 
The World Health Organisation(WHO) is warning countries such as Fiji, which is now facing the new variant to be wary of what COVID-19 can do.
 
This is based on how India only late last year was flattening the curve and heading towards a safe zone, but as of today has over 200,000 deaths and a new record of 379,459 new cases in the last 24 hours.
 
WHO Technical Lead for COVID-19, Maria Van Kerkhove, said the sudden growth in cases can destroy health care and people.
 
“Exponential growth that we have seen in case numbers is really truly astonishing. We have seen similar trajectories of increases in transmission in a number of countries. It has not been at the same scale and it has not been the same level of impact and burden on the health care system that we have seen in India, but we have seen similar trajectories where the incidence was almost vertical, if you looked at that epicurve. This can happen in a number of countries and in any countries, if we let our guards down. I am not saying that India has let its guard down but I am saying we are in a fragile situation.”

Meanwhile, the  United Nations in Fiji is calling on everyone to support the Ministry of Health’s effort in vaccinating the targeted population in the country.
 
While many have been forthcoming to get vaccinated, there are others who are hesitant.
 
UN Resident Coordinator Sanaka Samarasinha said  with the more infectious B1617 variant now in the country, eligible Fijians are urged not to be complacent and get vaccinated as soon as possible.
 
“Everybody who is eligible right now should be rolling up their sleeves and take the jab. Especially those with underlying conditions, those who are most vulnerable but really, every single person in Fiji, citizens and residents alike as soon as they are able to, they should go out and get the vaccine.”
 
Ministry of Health Head of COVID-19 Vaccination Taskforce Dr Rachel Devi have on many occasion reiterated that getting vaccinated now is important.
 
“Right now we haven’t vaccinated the whole population in Fiji above 18-years-old. Thus the risk is still there for everyone else that’s not vaccinated.”
 
The latest batch of vaccines that arrived in the country earlier this month are currently being administered to the targeted high-risk groups.
 
The next batch of vaccine under the COVAX facility is likely to arrive next week.

SOURCE: FBC NEWS/PACNEWS

 


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