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Tonga reports three covid related deaths

Thursday 24 March 2022 | Written by RNZ | Published in Regional, Tonga

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Tonga reports three covid related deaths
Tonga Minister of Health Dr Saia Piukala. Photo: RNZ/Daniela Maoate-Cox

The Tonga Government has reported three covid deaths and a total of 2,620 active cases in the Kingdom.

Health Minister Saia Piukala announced the new figures in a media update.

Mr Piukala said six people who had recently died had been tested positive for covid, but they consider only three deaths to be Covid related.

He said there were 66 active cases in the Vava'u Islands and 29 active cases in the Ha'apai Islands.

The total number of people to have caught Covid-19 since the outbreak was first announced on February 1, stands at 4,174.

A total of 98 percent of Tonga's eligible population have been vaccinated once, 90 percent vaccinated twice, while 49 percent have received their boosters.

He confirmed that 54,990 doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine had been received from the Australian Government on Monday.

Virus spreads into island group

Covid-19 has reached the Ha'apai group of islands for the first time with 29 positive cases in quarantine.

They were among 126 people who arrived on a repatriation vessel from the main island of Tongatapu.

Piukala said all passengers were evacuees returning to Ha'apai two months after January's eruption.

"126 people from Ha'apai have been returned to Ha'apai and are in isolation for five days. They were isolated for five days while they waited for the ferry in Tongatapu. Twenty-nine were tested positive."