Embassy confirms death; US, WHO help investigate mystery illness

THE US Embassy has confirmed the death of US couple David and Michelle Paul who died last week in Nadi.

The couple was on holiday on Denarau before falling sick from an unconfirmed illness.

In a statement, the US Embassy said it was working with local authorities to determine the cause of the couple’s sudden death.

“For more than a week, the US Embassy has been closely working with the Fiji Government, police, and health officials in their investigation into the tragic deaths of two US citizens while on holiday in Fiji,” the statement said.

“The embassy has facilitated contact between the US Centers for Disease Control and Fiji’s Ministry of Health to ascertain the causes of death and to assist in any related measures.

“We appreciate the efforts made thus far by the Fijian authorities and stand ready to provide further assistance, if requested.

“At this point, we are not aware of any specific public health threat to the community. We will provide updates as appropriate.”

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health confirmed collaborating with international authorities during the investigation.

“The Ministry of Health and Medical Services is investigating the deaths of two United States citizens who arrived in Fiji on Wednesday, the 22nd of May. The couple presented with an illness while in the country on holiday in the Western Division. Although they were provided medical treatment as standard of care, their illnesses progressively worsened and despite best efforts, they died within a few days of each other,” a statement from the Department of Information read.

“At this stage, the ministry is conducting investigations into the possible causes and has also put in place necessary public health measures. The ministry is also working with the Fiji Police Force’s forensics department, the World Health Organization, and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on determining the cause of death.”

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