Papua New Guinea has recorded another 52 new cases of COVID-19 bringing the total number of cases now to 323.
Out of these cases, 38 are from Western Province and 15 from the National Capital District.
“The new cases are linked to community transmission in NCD and a cluster of cases at the Ok Tedi mine,” said the National Pandemic Response Controller Mr David Manning.
Of the total cases,
- 221 are from NCD,
- 85 from Western Province,
- 5 from Morobe,
- 1 from West Sepik,
- 1 from Southern Highlands,
- 1 from New Ireland, 5 from Central,
- 2 from East New Britain,
- 1 from Eastern Highlands and
- 1 from the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
“Yesterday laboratories in Port Moresby and Brisbane completed 403 tests. Of those 52 have returned positive. That brings the total numbers of test completed to date to 13,361,” said Mr Manning.
The Brisbane laboratory is currently testing samples from Western Province, an arrangement funded by the Ok Tedi Mining Limited.
“It is the intention of the office of the Controller to be continually reviewing and improving our response through this Pandemic.
“I have requested a rapid review into Pathology and Data processes at this stage of the Pandemic with recommendations for improvement if necessary. Expressions of interest will be sought from external organisations to assist us to improve.
“The Government of Papua New Guinea recognises the ongoing effort by the international research community in developing an effective vaccine for SARS-COV-2 (COVID19).
“Until such time that an internationally recognised vaccine, approved and endorsed by the PNG regulatory authority and the World Health Organisation is made available, any person entering PNG will be required to complete the mandatory 14-day quarantine period, irrespective of any documentation indicating that they have received a SARS-COV-2 (COVID19) vaccine,” Mr Manning said.
Currently there are 16 inpatients at the Rita Flynn Isolation Centre which include 14 mild and two moderate cases.
Similarly, other provinces have patients isolated in designated isolated centres.
The Port Moresby General Hospital which has been caring for severe cases is currently nursing 1 moderate, 3 mild and 1 severe case who is on a life support ventilator.
A ventilator provides mechanical ventilation by moving breathable air into and out of the lungs, to deliver breaths to a patient who is physically unable to breathe.
“PNG to date has 110 recoveries and 213 active cases that are currently being isolated and monitored,” said Mr Manning.
Port Moresby General Hospital Isolation Centre which has been caring for severe cases, is currently nursing 3 severe and 3 moderate cases.
“COVID-19 is a real risk to every Papua New Guinean as in the rest of the world. The country has been reporting cases.
“While the situation is evolving, our advice on preventive measures is still valid. Comply with the Pandemic Orders and practice physical distancing to prevent infection and further spread of the virus,” said Mr Manning.