Second AUSMAT team to be deployed to PNG

This second larger team of up to 19 medical and public health specialists will expand Australia’s assistance to PNG in the battle against COVID-19.

They will deploy over an eight week period in September and October, working to strengthen PNG’s health system to help it continue to provide vital health services in a COVID-19 context.

As with the initial team, the second team will follow PNG’s quarantine requirements.


South Korea closes Seoul schools amid rise in cases

Nearly 200 staff and students have been infected in the greater Seoul area over the past two weeks.

Remote learning will continue until 11 September, the Ministry of Education said.

Health authorities have warned that the country is on the brink of a nationwide outbreak.

All students in the greater Seoul area, home to over 25 million people, will now take classes online with the exception of those in their final year of high school who are due to take university entrance examinations in December.

Latest Covid outbreak in French Polynesia tops 300

The government said 310 infections were recorded this month and 119 of them were considered recovered.

11 cases relate to tourists who had to self-test four days after arriving in Tahiti.

Three Covid-19 cases were reported on Raiatea.

Because of the worsening outbreak, the government and the French High Commission further tightened distancing measures.

Masks must be worn in urban areas and busy places, while any gathering involving more than 10 people must have official authorisation.

Several schools in Tahiti are also affected.

Victoria COVID cases up by 148, and eight deaths

The latest fatalities take the state's Covid-19 death toll to 438.

Yesterday's total of 116 new cases was the state's lowest in more than seven weeks .

It followed 209 new cases on Sunday and 182 on Saturday.

Premier Daniel Andrews is expected to give his regular daily update with details about the new cases later today.

Yesterday, he announced his Government would seek to change laws so that Victoria's state of emergency could be extended by another 12 months.



No new cases reported on Aug 24

However, there are 1,552 samples for COVID-19 at the laboratories waiting to be tested and results to be made known.

NCD still records the highest number of confirmed cases.

Meanwhile, the National Department of Health is developing specific guidelines on how to manage COVID-19 in pregnant women. This follows the confirmation of a 25-year-old pregnant woman with COVID-19 on Sunday. She was one of the 3 cases reported on that day.

Convicts tested

Provincial Police Commander, Chief Inspector David Yapu, said he had arranged with the CEO of Manus Provincial Health Authority, Francis Possy, for the checkup after the Correctional Services refused to accept them due to protocol.

Yapu said they had to abide by CS protocols therefore the prisoners underwent COVID-19 clearance.

“So far, we have a total of 70 prisoners in police custody and we do not know their COVID-19 status,” he stated.

No COVID-19 vaccine trial approved: Minister

“I have fielded questions over the last couple of days about trials being carried out in Papua New Guinea,” said Health and HIV/AIDS Minister, Jelta Wong.

“Firstly, let me say that any trial that could potentially be rolled out in Papua New Guinea must first be tabled and scrutinised by the Medical Research Advisory Committee (MRAC) through the National Department of Health. 

Covid testing will not lead to penalties for invalid visa holders - NZ govt

Hundreds of seasonal workers have been stranded in New Zealand over recent months, some with expiring visas.

Pacific leaders had already raised concern about those with uncertain immigration status missing out on assistance or healthcare because of fear of being discovered.

However the minister, Chris Hipkins, encouraged them to get tested for Covid-19 if they needed to.

"We will not use the information collected through the Covid-19 testing process for other purposes, including for immigration purposes," Mr Hipkins said.

PNG reports twelve new cases

COVID-19 related deaths remain at 3.

The update was released by the National Pandemic Controller David Manning.

All of these new cases are from Ok Tedi Mining Limited and are all asymptomatic, meaning they had not shown symptoms of the disease at the time of testing.

It was reported that the 12 cases are from eight dongas that had had initial cases.

The new cases are being isolated with other positive cases.

Total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Western Province is at 97.

Ireland at 'tipping point' as COVID-19 cases rise

Irish Health Minister Stephen Donnelly said: "We are at a tipping point."

He added that a few weeks ago there were just 61 new reported cases for a seven day period but last week there were 533 cases.

The tightening of restrictions comes ahead of the reopening of schools over the next two weeks.

Taoiseach (Irish PM) Mícheál Martin said that if the current rates of COVID-19 continue to rise "it will be impossible to stop the spread of the virus to our most vulnerable and our most compromised".