MP: No medical specialist in 2020

Minister Health and Medical Services Ifereimi Waqainabete outside Parliament yesterday. Picture: JONA KONATACI

Do not expect an overseas medical specialist to come to Fiji this year, says Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete.

He told the Committee of Supply in Parliament on Wednesday that the travel restrictions because of COVID-19 and the closure of borders would not allow any medical specialists to come to Fiji. “With the foreign visiting medical teams, we have had none this year,” he said.

“There were one or two who came at the beginning of the year but they had to rush back before the borders began to close.”

He said the ministry had been holding discussions with specialists on when the right time to come was.

“As you know, COVID-19 continues to play whatever it is beginning to do in this very dynamic situation that we are in at the moment. “So, because of that, it has been pushed back at the moment with the thinking, maybe next year, the visiting team can effectively come into the country,” said Dr Waqainabete.

He said the ministry would send people for overseas treatment as and when required.

“We had recently sent two children to New Zealand who needed to go across very quickly with the assistance of the New Zealand Government.

“One needed a heart operation and the other needed a big vessel operation on his chest,” he said.

More Stories