PRIME Minister Manasseh Sogavare says Solomon Islands can reclaim its status as a COVID-19 free country, if we eliminate the virus within the quarantine station.
The Prime Minister when delivering his nation-wide address on Monday this week, said the primary focus now is to contain the virus within the Chengs quarantine station and eliminate it from there.
“It needs our collective efforts and for our country to remain united and support each other,” he said.
Prime Minister Sogavare said Chengs is now classified as a high-risk quarantine station.
“Following the detection of the 3rd Covid-19 positive case, contact tracing to identify close and casual contacts of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd positive cases had been conducted,” he said.
The Prime Minister said this process is important as those in close contact with the index cases are more likely to contract the virus.
Therefore, he said separating them will help in preventing any further spread of the virus within the quarantine station.
“The students that had been shifted to the additional quarantine stations were identified in the ‘contact tracing process’ as those that either had no exposure, or very low risk exposure, to the any of the 3 positive cases,” he said.
Prime Minister Sogavare said it is important that all persons in quarantine must adhere to Covid-19 preventative measures.
He said the measures are frequent hand washing with soap or hand sanitizers, maintain social distancing and cough into bent elbows, sleeve, or tissue.
“Tissues must be disposed properly in the rubbish bins provided at the stations,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister has reiterated his call to students to avoid mingling and gathering in rooms.
He said the health authorities will closely monitor the behavior of students and serious actions will be taken against any offenders.
“The sooner we are clear of COVID-19 from the quarantine station, the sooner students will go out from quarantine,” he said.
The Prime Minister said from the responses to this situation, the virus has been localized at one location at this point.
He said the health assessment team has advised that the risk of community transmission is still low.
The Prime Minister said there is still no need for immediate lockdown until further advice.