Micronesia's First COVID-19 Outbreak Balloons, Causing Alarm

Wellington, New Zealand — The primary outbreak of COVID-19 in Micronesia rose in every week to greater than 1,000 as of Tuesday, elevating the alarm within the Pacific island nation.

Final week, Micronesia grew to become the final nation on the planet with a inhabitants of probably greater than 100,000 to expertise an outbreak of the illness after being postponed for two 1/2 years due to its geographic isolation and border controls.

Well being officers stated the instances have been growing quickly. It reported 140 new instances on Monday, bringing the entire to 1,261, a determine that features some instances caught on the border earlier than the outbreak.

Eight folks have been admitted to the hospital and one aged particular person has died, officers stated.

Officers stated a number of prime lawmakers and senior officers have caught the illness, together with Vice President Yosivo Jorge, who has been hospitalized. He stated that the situation of the Vice President is bettering.

Camille Movic, whose household owns Fusion Restaurant in Pohnpei State, informed The Related Press that lots of people are posting on Fb, for instance, that different folks keep away from their properties.

“To start with there was numerous panic and anxiousness with most individuals,” she stated.

She stated her restaurant remained open, though enterprise was sluggish as a result of many individuals have been afraid to dine out. She stated another eating places had closed their eating rooms and have been solely providing takeaway providers.

Movick stated officers had issued a directive that each one folks should put on masks in public – even open air – and he confronted a $1,000 high-quality for non-compliance.

She stated one constructive end result was that the outbreak had already prompted many individuals to get their photographs.

She stated many suspected the virus might have been spreading earlier than the primary neighborhood case was confirmed final week as a result of well being officers weren’t repeatedly testing sufferers for the illness.

Final yr, Micronesia grew to become one of many few international locations to implement a complete mandate that required all eligible residents to be vaccinated in opposition to the coronavirus.

The federal government threatened to withhold federal funds from any people or enterprise house owners who didn’t adjust to the principles. Well being officers stated this week that 75% of individuals aged 5 and older had been absolutely vaccinated.

Movick stated many sections of society have been functioning as earlier than, with many working from their places of work.

“We hope that issues will return to regular quickly,” Movic stated. “Like different international locations, over time, they’ve overcome it, and lifted restrictions.”

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