Editorial comment – Interesting turn of events

US couple Michelle and David. Picture: SUPPLIED/FAMILY

THE revelation that the Ministry of Health and Medical Services has ruled out infectious diseases as a cause of death of the American couple David and Michelle Paul is interesting.

The couple died in Nadi while on holiday last month.

The ministry issued a statement, highlighting the fact that investigations were carried out to reach the final result.

“Following an extensive, multi-organisational investigation, the Fijian Government has informed the family that an infectious cause of death has officially been ruled out,” the Government statement said.

“To reach this conclusion, a number of investigations were conducted by the ministry and its multinational partners, including post-mortem examinations, toxicology, microscopic examination of tissues, and a number of laboratory investigations to exclude a wide range of viral and bacterial causes.

“Through continued collaboration with the United States’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), further tests are being conducted to determine a cause of death, and family will be updated as further developments unfold.”

Given these findings, it stated, “the MOHMS is confident that there is no risk to the public”.

The five contacts or staff placed under precautionary observation, it stated, were in good health and had all returned to work.

The couple were quite enthusiastic about life. That much we can get off discussions with very close family members.

They loved life.

They lived life to the brim and enjoyed travelling to destinations around the world.

They loved snorkelling, hiking, and sightseeing.

They loved each other and valued their family.

When they became ill, they each contacted their mother.

They messaged them their health status as a “mystery illness” attacked them in Nadi. What was supposed to be a holiday to remember ended tragically.

Shortly after arriving in Fiji, they started feeling ill.

They had diarrhoea, were vomiting, and their hands were numb.

The circumstances surrounding the deaths have attracted attention locally as well as internationally.

Now that one chapter of the investigations is completed, the results are interesting.

They will raise more questions.

What happened to the couple? What was the mystery illness?

For the sake of Fijians and the couple’s family members, there must be a concerted effort to get to the bottom of this, to appropriately bring closure to this turn of events.

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