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Australia medical team arrives in Kiribati to assess Covid-19 situation

Thursday 3 February 2022 | Written by RNZ | Published in Regional

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Australia medical team arrives in Kiribati to assess Covid-19 situation
Photo by: Anne Orquiza / DFAT

The Kiribati Health Ministry has confirmed 138 new infections on Wednesday taking the total number of people infected with Covid-19 to nation high of 767 people.

Health Minister Tinte Itinteang told RNZ Pacific that a five-person team including "doctors, nurses and logistical staff" had arrived in the country from Australia.

Left to right Kiribati fisheries minister Ribanataake Tiwau and Kiribati health minister Tinte Itinteang who are part of the country's Covid-19 Response Taskforce.
Left to right Kiribati fisheries minister Ribanataake Tiwau and Kiribati health minister Tinte Itinteang who are part of the country's Covid-19 Response Taskforce. Photo: Supplied/Kiribati Government

He said the Australian medical assistance team (AUSTMAT) will be in Tarawa for 10-days to assess the Covid-19 situation and prepare the nation for the next stage in its response.

"Obviously New Zealand works very closely with Australia and I suspect the assessment of the AUSMAT assessment team will then be captured and then be acted on by both the DFAT of Australia and MFAT of New Zealand," Itinteang said.

AUSMAT brought with them medical supplies and 27,300 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccines and will provide support to local health authorities.

The AUSMAT Rapid Assessment team will be quarantined at Utireirei Motel before they start their scoping mission.