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07 Feb 2016 description

I am pleased to announce Australia is providing up to $500,000 to help Pacific island countries counter the spread of the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

Stopping the spread of Zika in the Pacific is essential to protecting Australia from the virus, which has seen a resurgence in our region.

The initial focus will be on strengthening prevention and response capacity in Tonga, where there is a reported increase in the number of suspected cases.

05 Feb 2016 description


  • An Emergency Committee was convened by the Director-General under the International Health Regulations (2005) on 1 February 2016. Following the advice of the Committee, the Director-General announced the recent cluster of microcephaly and other neurologic disorders reported in Brazil to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

04 Feb 2016 description
report Government of Tonga

3rd February 2016 Tonga will be benefit from state-of the art techniques that allow them to assess risks from natural disasters such as tropical cyclones and earthquakes under the assistance provided under the joint Pacific Catastrophe Risk Assessment and Financing Initiative (PCRAFI) .

PCRAFI assists participants from line Ministries, especially the Ministry of Finance and the National Emergency Management Office (NEMO), in risk modelling and risk profiling.

That will help government draw up risk reduction measures.

04 Feb 2016 description
report Government of Tonga

The Minister of Health, Hon. Saia Piukala this morning confirmed in the Legislative Assembly that Zika virus which is spread by mosquito is in Tonga.

Five reported cases have now been confirmed by the Health Ministry.

It is the first reported cases in Tonga.

According to the Minister of Health reports from New Zealand say three Tongans were tested positive of the Zika virus infection after returning from Nuku’alofa.

29 Jan 2016 description





El Niño status

29 Jan 2016 description

Jan 2016

Background and purpose

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has as its **Strategic Objective 5** to “Increase the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises”. In support of its national counterparts, FAO aims to address the current and future needs of vulnerable people affected by the 2015‒2016 El Niño event.

29 Jan 2016 description

The following syndromes have been flagged: - Acute Fever and Rash: French Polynesia, Palau - Diarrhoea: Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands, Tonga - Influenza-like illness: Solomon Islands - Prolonged fever: Solomon Islands

Other updates

Zika virus - Tonga: There has been an increase in the number of suspected zika cases reported in the week ending 17 and 24 January 2016. Two out of nine samples sent to the LabPlus NZ, were RT-PCR positive for Zika virus.

28 Jan 2016 description

Tonga's Ministry of Health has confirmed the first case of Zika virus in the island kingdom with no further details being released.

Radio Tonga reports Dr Seini Kupu, a specialist from Vaiola Hospital's Non-Communicable Diseases Division says the confirmation was determined tests done in Tahiti.

The Zika virus is spread through mosquitoes and symptoms include mild fever, rashes and joint pain.

27 Jan 2016 description

Genetic diversity of livestock can help feed a hotter, harsher world

Despite growing interest in safeguarding biodiversity of livestock and poultry,genetic erosion continues

26 Jan 2016 description
report UN Children's Fund

Total affected population: 2.3 million
Total affected children (under 18): 1.4 million
Total people to be reached in 2016: 85,000
Total children to be reached in 2016: 51,000

2016 programme targets


  • 800 children aged 6 to 59 months with global acute malnutrition identified and referred, including 120 children treated for severe acute malnutrition (SAM)

  • 48,000 children under 5 years received micronutrient supplementation

25 Jan 2016 description

This research report draws on empirical case studies on the mainstreaming of Disaster Risk Management (DRM) to provide insights into the experience of low and middle-income countries in Asia. Most case studies are based on reviews and assessments done by international organisations such as the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

25 Jan 2016 description

The following syndromes have been flagged:

Acute Fever and Rash: French Polynesia, Palau

Diarrhoea: Solomon Islands

Other updates


22 Jan 2016 description
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Summary - English version
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Full Report - English version

El Niño threatens at least 60 million people in high-risk developing countries, WHO says

Geneva, 22 January 2016—The World Health Organization (WHO) and its partners predict a major global increase in health consequences of emergencies this year due to El Niño.

13 Jan 2016 description
report Government of Tonga

On 11 January 2016, Houma, the far end village in ‘Eua to the North celebrated the finish of the new water supply system funded by China.

H.E. Huang Huaguang, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China in Kingdom of Tonga and Hon. Tevita Lavemaau, Minister for Revenue and Custom, who is also the People’s Representative for ‘Eua joined this happy occasion.

10 Jan 2016 description

The following syndromes have been flagged:

Diarrhoea: Solomon Islands, Tonga

Other updates


Solomon Islands: Rotavirus outbreak continues. It appears that nationally the outbreak has plateaued, although case numbers may still be increasing in some provinces. Six deaths (4 children and 2 adults) have been reported to have died of a diarrhoeal illness during the outbreak. These deaths are being investigated to determine which deaths are attributable to the complications of rotavirus gastroenteritis.

09 Jan 2016 description

Severe Tropical Cylcone Ula returns to category three strength, bringing winds of up to 120 kilometres per hour as it tracks slowly towards Vanuatu.

Severe Tropical Cylcone Ula has returned to category three strength, bringing winds of up to 120 kilometres per hour as it tracks slowly west south-westerly away from Fiji towards Vanuatu.

The first cyclone of 2016 had weakened to a category one after hitting Tonga's northern islands, particularly Vava'u, as a category three system last Saturday.

09 Jan 2016 description


• Tropical Cyclone ULA formed over the South Pacific Ocean on 30 December 2015 and moved southsouthwest, strengthening. It passed close to Vava'u islands (Tonga) on 1 January 2016, with max. sustained winds of 140 km/h and close to Lau Islands (Fiji) on 2-3 January, with max. sust. winds of 160-170 km/h.

• Heavy rainfall and strong winds affected Fiji and Tonga during its passage. Media reported minor damage and evacuations in Tonga, as well as floods and damage in some areas of Fiji.

07 Jan 2016 description
report Government of Tonga

The State of Emergency declared for Vava’u and Ha’apai in preparedness for Cyclone Ula has been cancelled.