There will be no visiting at the government’s quarantine facility when the passenger flights resume on Monday, October 18th and there will be changes to security and protocols.
Premier Tagelagi says that the government has a moral obligation to bring our people home, “We have a moral obligation also to our people and we can’t keep them away. We have to find a way to bring them home”.
However, there will be changes to the quarantine protocols, to minimise exposure of our frontline staff directly with the arriving passengers, the Premier said that the government is looking to make sure that on the first flight that there is either a doctor or a nurse on that flight.
“On the first flight, there should be a qualified doctor or nurse on that flight. Our health staff here will not be needed to monitor the passengers, but will be monitored by one of the passengers themselves who is a qualified doctor or nurse”.
“We have reached out to Pacific Medical Association (PMA) in Auckland for some of our Niuean medical staff to travel to Niue with the passengers as well to monitor passengers while in isolation.”
Premier Tagelagi was on ‘News of the Week’ radio programme last Friday. He said that families and friends will not be allowed to visit the facility at Homofiti, it will be a matter of drop-off only.
The Chief of Police is also going to be returning home which will help with the first flights if there is also someone on the flight who can handle security for those inside the facility. They may even have to drive themselves to the quarantine facility from the airport.
The government is very cautious because there are still community cases of the Delta variant in Auckland right now, hence the decision to minimise exposure of our people to the passengers.
Premier Tagelagi said that the government understands the virus may very well enter Niue at some stage, but for now, they will try their best to keep it out for as long as they can.
These changes to quarantine and security protocols will hopefully ensure that we keep the virus out of Niue.
Passengers are limited to up to 20 per flight and especially for the first few flights. There are at least one hundred locals stranded in New Zealand including four members of parliament and several senior public servants.