BY MAVIS NISHIMURA POODKOLO
Results to the fourth and final test for our quarantined students will indicate the situation of covid-19 in the country.
The test was carried out on Sunday and yesterday.
This round of tests determines whether quarantine periods should be extended or that students could be released back to society sooner.
So, if the virus slips past this last test unnoticed, then all we have worked hard for will be for naught when a carrier is released into the community.
However, with the laudable thorough and intense work by government since the first case to track, identify and contain the virus and eliminate it behind the walls of quarantine, the general outlook is one of optimism that ‘all will go well’.
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare, in his national address yesterday, put emphasis on this final and “most important” test, expressing the anticipation being felt as we all look forward to the results.
“Based on our testing protocol for people arriving from high risk countries, the fourth the final test have been collected yesterday and today.
“As I indicated in my statement last Thursday, this round of test is perhaps our most important. The results will tell us which way the covid-19 situation is heading within our quarantine stations, so we await the results in anticipation,” said Sogavare.
He said the Oversight Committee will make a recommendation to Cabinet on whether the Quarantine period at the Chengs Quarantine Station will be extended and for how long, as well as the additional number of covid-19 testings during this period.
“Based on normal practice, the quarantine period is normally extended from the last date of exposure, which in the case of Chengs, is the 13th of October 2020, the date when the last sample was collected
“The extended period will apply to all students who are still at Chengs as well as to the students that had been shifted from Chengs to other quarantine facilities.
“A separate risk assessment is being made for those who are quarantined at GBR quarantine station because no one has tested positive from this site. A decision on those quarantined at the GBR quarantine station will be made after the results of the fourth test are available,” said Sogavare.
The number of active covid-19 cases in the country remains at three. All Asymptomatic.