All 618 personnel on board HMAS Adelaide have received negative COVID-19 results after their compulsory Day 12 COVID-19 tests and completed their mandatory 14-day quarantine period.
The Australian embarked forces and crew can now disembark their ship under the agreed COVID safe measures to support the Fijian Government’s TC Yasa response efforts without risking COVID-19 exposure for Fijians.
At the request of the Fijian Government, the Australian embarked forces and crew will focus on essential cyclone recovery tasks and continue to maintain strict COVID-safe protocols.
Fiji’s Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) confirmed that all 618 swabs taken from HMAS Adelaide personnel on Tuesday and flown to Australian laboratories for testing, came back negative and no one on board had COVID-19 symptoms. This reassurance is in addition to the pre-departure COVID-19 tests that all came back negative before the ship set sail for Fiji on 24 December.
Fiji’s Permanent Secretary for Health and Medical Services, Dr James Fong, said that “all ADF members who have deployed on HMAS Adelaide have complied with Fiji’s rigorous COVID-19 and quarantine requirements” and that he was “confident that these Australians would pose no COVID-19 health risk for Fiji”.Australia’s Acting High Commissioner to Fiji, Anna Dorney, said
“Last January, Fiji sent RFMF personnel to Australia to help Australia respond to unprecedented bushfires. This January, Australia is supporting the Fijian Government respond to TC Yasa. Our Vuvale Partnership has never been stronger.”
She said “the crew and embarked forces from HMAS Adelaide adhered to the strictest COVID-19 protocols, as ensuring the protection of Fijian people from COVID-19 is our highest priority”.At the request of the Fijian Government, the embarked forces and crew of HMAS Adelaide will spend the remainder of their time here focusing on readying schools and students in areas affected by the cyclone for their return to classes later this month.
This will include providing affected schools with water tanks or generators and repairing or rebuilding some schools.