Prime Minister confirms first suspected case of coronavirus; WHO staff treating patient

    Fakamatala tonu 'eni 'a e Minisitā Mo'ui ki he Kaniva: Oku ‘iai ha finemui ta’u 21 ‘oku lolotonga tauhi he uooti mahaki pipihi ‘ae Falemahaki Vaiola koe finemui na’e toki foki mai mei Aositelelia he ‘aho Monite ‘aho 2 ‘o Maasi 2020. Na’e ‘omai e tokotaha ni ki he falemahaki moe puke lahi ‘oku mahalo’i koe niumonia tupu mei he Covid 19. ‘Oku kei teuteu’i ke ‘ave hono ngaahi sivi ki muli ke fakapapau’i pe koe Covid 19 eni pe ‘ikai. ‘Oku tupu ‘ae mahalo ki he Covid19 he na’e puke ‘ae tokotaha koeni ‘I Aositelelia pea ‘alu ‘o sio Toketa he ‘aho Falaite uike kuo ‘osi pea talaange pe koe flu. Ka koe tupu mei he vave ‘ene puke ‘o faka’au ke lahi ange pea ‘oku niumonia ia he taimi ni, na’e ‘alu ai ‘ae mahalo ki he Covid 19. Ka ‘oku ou fie fakaha heni, ‘oku te’eki ke fakapapau’i eni mei he sivi ‘e ‘ave ki muli ka ‘oku sai ke tau teuteu pe na’a positive. Koe ngaahi ngaue mahu’inga ‘oku fai he taimi ni koe: 1) ‘Oange faito’o fe’unga ki he Tokotaha ni pea ke mahino ‘oku malu e kau ngaue ‘ae MOH ‘oku nau fai ‘ae fatongia koeni ke feinga ke fakahaofi si’i mo’ui ‘ae finemui ni, he ‘oku ne si’i puke lahi ‘aupito. 2) ‘Oku lolotonga fai e ngaue ke kumi ‘ae kakai kotoa na’e ofi he tokotaha ni kamata pe he kau pasese na’e nofo ofi kiai he vakapuna, ki he kakai naa nau fetu’utaki vaofi moia he’ene foki mai. 3) Hange pe ko ‘eku lave atu ‘i ‘olunga - kuo pau pe ke fakapapau’i koe Covid 19 eni. Koia kuo ‘osi to’o e ngaahi samples ke ‘ave ke sivi ‘I muli ke fakapapau’i. 4) ‘Oku gaue fakataha ‘aupito ‘ae Pule’anga moe Potungaue Mo’ui, moe ngaahi development partners ‘I hono tokoni’i e ngaahi timi koeni ‘oku nau lolotonga ngaue ki he case koeni ke fakapapau’i ‘oku fe’unga e ngaue kotoa ‘oku fai.

    The Tongan government has confirmed that health authorities have identified the kingdom’s first suspected case of coronavirus.

    The suspect is a 21 year-old Tongan woman who flew into the kingdom from Sydney on Monday, the Minister of Health, Prof ‘Amelia Afuha’amango Tu’ipulotu told Kaniva News this evening.

    The Minister said samples were being sent to New Zealand for testing.

    The woman had flu-like symptoms in Australia, but her symptoms became worse when she got to Tongatapu. The woman went to Vaiola Hospital last week where she was diagnosed with pneumonia.

    The Minister’s comments came after she and Prime Minister Pōhiva Tu’i’onetoa held a press conference this afternoon in Nuku’alofa to brief media on the Covid-19 coronavirus response.

    Ministry of Health CEO, Dr Siale ‘Akauola said World Health Organisation staff were in Tonga to train staff in handling the coronavirus. They were now treating the patient.

    Ministry officials were tracing people she might have had contact with in Tonga.

    Border controls

    Tonga has already introduced strict border controls and  turned away visitors.

    The government recently told three cruise ships not to dock after the virus broke out on another cruise liner, Diamond Princess, which was eventually quarantined in Japan.

    The Ministry of Health has said an outbreak of coronavirus in Tonga was likely to cause a high death toll and have serious economic consequences.

    On Tuesday the World Health Organisation warned of a global shortage of protective equipment to fight the disease.

    The main points

    • The Tongan government has confirmed that health authorities have identified the kingdom’s first suspected case of coronavirus.
    • Tongan media reported this evening that the suspect is a 21 year-old Tongan woman who flew into the kingdom from Sydney on Monday.

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