Papua New Guinea has now a total of 459 confirmed coronavirus cases.
6 new cases were recorded in the National Capital District in the last 24 hours.
Of the six cases, 3 were male and 3 were female. Also, only 2 of these cases were symptomatic.
The six cases were among the 307 samples that were collected in five health clinics and testing sites in NCD in the past week. These are the Rita Flynn Isolation Facility which collected the most samples of 236, followed by Gerehu Hospital with 31, Taurama Aquatic Drive-Through – 20; Rapid Response Teams -14; and Pacific International Hospital – 6.
The other provinces that had sent samples for testing in the past week apart from NCD were Autonomous Region of Bougainville (207) which collected 207, Morobe (160); Manus (55), Western Highlands (41), East New Britain (30), Milne Bay (28), Eastern Highlands (23), Enga (19), West Sepik (12), Chimbu (7), Jiwaka (7), Western (6), New Ireland (5), Madang (4) and Central (3).
Five provinces that did not send any samples were West New Britain, Southern Highlands, Oro, Hela, and Gulf.
“The Central Province, which sent only 3 samples and Gulf, which sent none are expected to do more testing as their people have easy access to NCD and are likely to acquire the virus in the city which is experiencing community transmission. However, the spread of the virus cannot be shown in the testing rates continue to be very low in the two provinces,’’ says David Manning, Controller of National Pandemic Response.
During the National Emergency and the lockdowns, Mr. Manning sent out orders, one of which was instructing health facilities to test for COVID-19 treat all people presenting with Influenza-like illnesses, Severe Acute Respiratory Illnesses and pneumonia. as suspects for COVID-19 by testing them for COVID-19.
“Unless this is done we will not know the extent of the prevalence of COVID-19 in the country. The number of specimens being received at the laboratories has decreased this month. This is a reflection of the decrease in testing,’’ says Manning.
Meanwhile, the number of cases globally continues to rise. As of today, a total of 24,886,685 confirmed cases, and 840,410 deaths were reported. Of this, there was an increase of 272,161 confirmed cases in the last 24 hours.
In the Western Pacific region where PNG sits, a total of 5,726 new cases were reported in 13 countries or areas in the region. This has brought the total confirmed cases to 481,696 confirmed cases and a death toll of 10,413 in the region.
There were also 120 deaths confirmed in five countries in the region which were Australia (11), Hong Kong (3), Japan (12), Philippines (91), and Korea (3).
Indonesia’s two provinces – Papua and West Papua – have both reported 26 and 6 new cases respectively in the last 24 hours, bringing the total confirmed cases in the two provinces to 4,461. The death toll for the two provinces remains at 54.