Most read reports
- MSF: MSF: Medevac repeal entrenches dangerous precedents on denial of medical care. 20 Dec 2019
- MSF: Nauru: Government prohibits remote mental health care to MSF's former patients. 1 Mar 2019
- RNZI: Nauru refugees refuse Taiwan medical transfers. 26 Nov 2019
- MSF: Refugees' lives in danger with MSF forced to end mental healthcare activities. 11 Oct 2018
- UNHCR: UNHCR appeals to Australia to act and save lives at immediate risk. 22 Oct 2018
• The measles outbreaks in the four Pacific Island and Territories (PICs) continues, but with fewer cases reported in the last week.
• A low level of transmission continues in American Samoa, Fiji, Samoa and Tonga, but the overall situation has stabilised.
• No further measles cases have been reported from Kiribati, while monitoring and surveillance is continuing
• As of 30 December, four Pacific Islands Countries and Areas (PICs) have announced measles outbreaks: American Samoa, Fiji, Samoa and Tonga. The number of cases is decreasing in Samoa, and the situation has stabilised in American Samoa, Fiji, and Tonga.
• Kiribati has two laboratory confirmed cases of measles, no epidemiological link has been identified during investigation.
• A suspected measles case in Niue has been found to be laboratory negative; i.e. no case of measles.
• Measles outbreaks are ongoing in four Pacific Islands Countries and areas (PICs; Samoa, Tonga, Fiji,
American Samoa), which are diverse in scale and stage of the outbreak, as well as the country context.
• A laboratory conformed case has also been reported from Kiribati while one case is being investigated Niue.
4 December 2019 – The decision to repeal Australia’s ‘Medevac’ legislation endangers patients in need and ignores the ethical framework of the entire medical profession, said international medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) today.
The Medevac referral process provided for in the Migration Amendment (Medical Transfers) legislation had been one of the most effective pathways for patients held under offshore processing to access the care they need in Australia.
A total 5,331 cases, including 75 deaths, have been reported since the beginning of the outbreak, including 638 in the last week. As of 14 Dec 2019, there were 150 measles cases admitted in six hospitals (nil remaining in Lalomanu and Faleolo hospitals on Upolu and Sataua hospital in Savai’i.
Ministers from 69 states will be present but Australian Government ministers noticeably absent when the world gathers in Geneva this week for the largest-ever forum on the global response to refugees.
The Global Refugee Forum, to be held on Tuesday and Wednesday (17-18 December) at the United Nations in Geneva, will bring together around 2000 leaders of government, business, NGOs and refugee networks, to discuss concrete ways of implementing the Global Compact on Refugees over the next four years.
Global measles resurgence
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is disappointed by the repeal of the Medevac legislation in the Australian Parliament on Wednesday, which may negatively impact vial care for asylum seekers in offshore processing facilities.
Since its commencement earlier this year, the medevac mechanism had proven to be a timely, effective and often life-saving evacuations for seriously ill asylum seekers at facilities at Manus Island in Papua New Guinea and Nauru.
Today’s repealing of the Medevac legislation will prolong the pain of refugees who have been suffering at the hands of the Australian Government for more than six years, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) says.
RCOA CEO Paul Power said the Senate vote removes legislation designed to end political and bureaucratic interference in decisions about how best to treat the medical needs of the refugees and people seeking asylum held by Australia in Papua New Guinea and Nauru.
Delivers 115,500 doses of measles vaccines to worst-affected Samoa
SUVA, 28 November 2019: UNICEF is supporting the Governments of Samoa, Fiji and the Kingdom of Tonga to respond to the current measles outbreak in the Pacific region. As of 28 November, almost 300,000 vaccines and medical supplies have been delivered to reach those populations most at-risk in Samoa, Fiji, the Kingdom of Tonga, Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Nauru, Niue, Tokelau and Tuvalu.
At least 20 refugees approved for medical transfer to Australia have been stopped from travelling by Nauru.
Read more on Radio New Zealand International.
Sick refugees detained by Australia on Nauru have been refusing medical transfers to Taiwan.
Read more on Radio New Zealand International
Violence against women and girls is a fundamental violation of human rights. Violence endangers the lives of women and girls and restricts their participation in economic and social life. The Australian Government is committed to ending violence against women and girls (EVAWG) in Australia and overseas. Australian aid investments are supporting countries in the Indo-Pacific to address gender-based violence as a human rights and gender equality imperative while improving services and access to justice for survivors.
The Fifth Pacific Islands Climate Outlook Forum (PICOF-5) recently issued the Regional Statement on the Climate of 2018/19 and Climate, Ocean and Tropical Cyclone Outlook for October to December 2019.
Associate Professor Savitri Taylor and Dr Joyce Chia
How can we keep the executive accountable? This is the great democratic question of our times. It is a question with special force when it comes to the protection of minorities in an age where populism is increasingly conflated with a virulent brand of nationalism.
The India-Pacific Islands Developing States (PSIDS) Leaders’ Meeting was held on 24th September 2019 in New York on the sidelines of the 74th UNGA. The meeting was attended by the Heads of delegation of Fiji, Republic of Kiribati, Republic of Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of Nauru, Republic of Palau, Independent State of Papua New Guinea, The Independent State of Samoa, Solomon Islands, Kingdom of Tonga, Tuvalu and Republic of Vanuatu.
The Medical Evacuation Response Group (MERG) has responded to the Independent Health Advice Panel (IHAP) Report tabled in Parliament, stating the report shows that in the majority of cases, the Minister himself agrees that transfer to Australia is medically necessary.
The IHAP reported that only 15 cases needed review by the panel from April – June 2019. IHAP only provides its assessment where the Minister refuses an initial transfer recommendation made by 2 independent Australian treating doctors.
by Anna Maria Link
As the debate over climate-related security risks grows, many Pacific Island states are calling for more action by the international community to better address the links between climate change and global security. Baron Waqa, who was President of Nauru at the time of this interview, highlighted some of these calls while speaking to Anna Maria Link of Adelphi in April; he also outlined the challenges in getting the climate-security issue on the United Nations agenda.