An overly cautious approach to contain the virus in MIQ as locals are reminded to follow the rules

Premier Dalton Tagelagi and Director General of Health and Social Services Gaylene Tasmania were on Radio Sunshine this morning to inform the public about the two new cases in MIQ and to reassure the public that the six active cases are all well and asymptomatic.

Director-General Gaylene Tasmania said that there are two MIQ facilities that are locations of interest.

“Currently we have two sites of interest to us because these are the sites with the cases and unless we have more information, right now the protocol in place is that these places become lockdown basically. The last thing we want is for this virus to get out into the community”, said Mrs. Tasmania.

According to the Director-General that the health officials will be investigating further to determine how these two new cases became infected.

“We will do our best to investigate further, what we don’t know is whether these two cases developed here in Niue, meaning whether there was transmission within the MIQ facility or they had just been incubating the virus”.

In the meantime, the two MIQ facilities with the six positive cases will be on lockdown while the investigations continue, and officials will be able to inform later in the week how long this lockdown will be.

“We just have to tread cautiously again, in an overly cautious approach and that to us means we have to provide a lockdown for those places where the new cases have been identified.  So for now, unless we have more information and we will especially come Wednesday when we have our day nine tests we will have a better idea of the direction of the virus”.

BCN news was contacted by some of the passengers in one of the MIQ facilities saying that while they may accept the protocol to lockdown, the government should also provide food and incidentals for those who tested negative but are still required to extend their quarantine.

In response to this Premier Tagelagi said that the government will always step up to help its people and that safety is always foremost.

“Well, it’s unfortunate if we have to extend their time in MIQ but first things first, it’s about safety for everyone here. If they are in a situation where no one can support them with food or whatever the case may be of course we will reach out to help”, said Premier Tagelagi.

Meanwhile, the government is also aware of some locals not following the rules of the MIQ facilities by visiting and chatting with the passengers instead of just dropping off their food and supplies.

Hon. Dalton Tagelagi is urging the families and friends of the passengers coming on the flight next Monday to take heed of the rules for MIQ facilities.

“That’s the concern at the moment for the Officials and Cabinet that people are not listening. Let’s not spoil it for the others”, said Premier Tagelagi.

The next flight is still expected on Monday next week and the government will inform the island over the next few days what will happen to the MIQ facilities in lockdown.

The island remains in Alert Level Yellow where it is largely business as usual, but people are encouraged to use their QR code and scan the RockSafe App and also take advantage of the drive-through Covid-19 testing station at the Niuefoou hospital on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 10 am to 12 middays.

The government’s official Covid-19 website contains all the information about Alert Levels and advisories.

1 thought on “An overly cautious approach to contain the virus in MIQ as locals are reminded to follow the rules

  1. I respect the work of our Health officials. In light of the cases currently in the MIQ facilities in question, it is unfortunate, I’m all for safety measures designed to keep our motu safe. Provided, due consideration is given to the people with negative results. I think it’s imperative to seek a favourable resolution for those. I can honestly say that this isolation is so different from the previous ones I have had. Ever since the revelation of the positive cases, our Homofiti residents have stayed in our units and rarely venture out. The Homofiti cases as well have remained in their units and were advised they stay in their units and not leave at any time. Heck they are not even allowed to use the laundry facilities. But as responsible people they adhere to the request of our Health officials. My only concern is this… the positive cases should have been removed from Homofiti into their own isolated facility. Even though they remained in their unit the whole time, one can still be a bit worried.
    I want to wait till the Wednesday results. Here’s hoping that everyone concerned will return a negative result. If we are to remain in MIQ for the latest cases then it’s the government’s responsibility to ensure that we are fed.. not our families. We would have been out on Wednesday otherwise. This prolonged stay is not our fault especially the negative ones. We are supposed to be in here for 10 days. The last lot that had a positive result left their MIQ facilities after 10 days. Yet they were all close contacts inside the plane just like us. In essence, those that returned positive cases should remain in isolation for 14 days. If we return negative results on Wednesday we should be allowed to leave. A stab at a tricky situation.. Fakaue lahi mahaki.

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