Woman, 73, is possibly Fiji’s first West COVID19 death in almost 3 months

A 73-year-old woman died at the Lautoka Hospital recently and is possibly Fiji’s first COVID-19 fatality in the West for the first time in almost three months.

The deceased from Namoli Village who health officials say was seen at the Lautoka Hospital on 19 July with severe respiratory disease. She died on the same day.

The last time a COVID-19 death was recorded in Lautoka was in May involving a 53-year-old man who was also Fiji’s first fatality since the outbreak started in April.

Meanwhile, the 73-year-old woman who died in Lautoka was one of five COVID19 deaths announced yesterday, their ages ranging from 57 and the oldest, 96. There have now been 177 deaths due to COVID-19 in Fiji, with 175 of these deaths during the outbreak that started in April this year.

  • Details of the other 4 deaths (22 -23 July)
    • 96-year-old woman, Nadera
      • Died at home on 22 July
      • She was not vaccinated.
    • 67-year-old woman, Suva
      • Died at home on 22 July
      • She was not vaccinated
    • 57-year-old woman, Nasinu
      • Presented and died on the same day, 23 July, at a health facility
      • She was not vaccinated
    • 57-year-old man, Nasinu
      • Died at home on 23 July
      • He was not vaccinated

Also yesterday, the Ministry of Health also reported 684 new coronavirus infections with 12 from a new area of interest being the crew of a Fiji-flagged tuna fishing vessel K Camellia; 205 from existing areas of interest in the Central and Western divisions (highest case at a venue – 152 at CWM including 27 staff); 305 from screening clinics (76 in West-based facilities and 229 in the Central) and 162 who were identified as contacts of previous positive patients (98 in the West and 64 in the Central)

There have also been 12 more deaths of COVID-19 positive patients. However, their deaths have been classified as non-COVID deaths having been attributed to serious pre-existing medical conditions, bringing to 87 total deaths of similar nature in the current outbreak.

There have been 165 new recoveries reported since the last update, which means that there are now 16,563 active cases. There have been 22,443 cases during the outbreak that started in April 2021 and a total of 22,513 cases since the first case was reported in March 2020, with 5,686 recoveries.
Screening Update

A total of 5,726 individuals were screened and 1,656 swabbed at stationary screening clinics in the last 24 hours, bringing a cumulative total to 354,948 individuals screened and 65,606 swabbed to date. Mobile teams screened a total of 4,320 individuals and swabbed 638 in the last 24 hours. This brings a cumulative total to 739,036 individuals screened and 65,450 swabbed by our mobile teams to date.

Testing update
A total of 247,846 samples have been tested since this outbreak started in April 2021, with 290,707 tested since testing began in March 2020. 3694  tests have been reported for July 22nd July. Updated testing number data for one lab has been received for July 21st and the total number for that day has been updated. The national 7-day daily test average is 3841 tests per day or 4.3 tests per 1,000 population. The national 7-day average daily test positivity is 24.4 %.  

Vaccination Update
As of the 23rd July, 438,535 adults in Fiji have received their first dose of the vaccine and 95,173 have received their second doses. This means that 74.8% of the target population have received at least one dose and 16.2% are now fully vaccinated nationwide.

Epidemic Outlook
The 7-day average of new cases per day is 863 cases per day or 975 cases per million population per day.  The recent drop in new cases yesterday and today should be viewed with caution – daily case numbers have increased and decreased in the past and will continue to vary. This is influenced by a number of factors including where samples that were tested on a particular day came from – for example the Western Division samples are currently being prioritised as they are still in the containment phase, and quick turnaround of results will help with identifying cases and contacts early and contain transmission. It is more helpful to monitor our 7 day average of cases over a period of time to assess our trend of cases.

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