Singapore reports 383 new COVID-19 cases, including 12th pre-school staff member

Singapore reports 383 new COVID-19 cases, including 12th pre-school staff member

People wearing protective masks (2)
A woman wears a protective face mask in Singapore on Mar 11, 2020. (Photo: Gaya Chandramohan)

SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 383 new COVID-19 cases as of noon on Tuesday (May 26), taking the country's total number of infections to 32,343. 

A total of 381 of the new cases are work permit holders residing in dormitories, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said in its daily update.

The lower number of cases reported on Tuesday was partly due to fewer tests being conducted, MOH said. This is the second consecutive day where fewer tests have been conducted.

MOH said it continues to pick up many cases among work permit holders residing in dormitories, including in factory-converted dormitories, because of extensive testing in these premises, as part of its process to verify and test the status of all workers.

No new cluster was reported for a third consecutive day. 

PRE-SCHOOL STAFF MEMBER TESTS POSITIVE

There were two new community cases among the 383 cases. 

This includes a 30-year-old Singaporean woman who worked at a pre-school. She was asymptomatic and was picked up as a result of proactive screening of pre-school staff members

MOH did not specify where she works and her case is currently unlinked. She is the 12th pre-school employee to have tested positive for COVID-19 since screening began on May 15.

READ: S$33b Fortitude Budget aimed at providing jobs, supporting workers and firms through 'difficult period' of COVID-19

The other community case, a 23-year-old Malaysian man, was asymptomatic and was picked up as a result of proactive screening of work permit holders working at institutes of higher learning. MOH did not specify where the man works and his case is currently unlinked. 

"The number of new cases in the community has increased, from an average of four cases per day in the week before, to an average of seven per day in the past week. 

"This is partly due to our active surveillance and screening of nursing home residents and pre-school staff, which have picked up more cases in the past week," said the ministry.

MOH added that the number of unlinked cases in the community has remained stable at an average of two per day in the past two weeks. 

Of the new cases, 99 per cent are linked to known clusters. Further details can be found in MOH's daily situation report

Cases in the community visited the FairPrice Xtra outlet at Jurong Point shopping centre from 1pm to 2pm on Sunday as well as the wet market at Block 963 Jurong West Street 91 from 6am to 8am on Sunday during their infectious period. 

READ: Fortitude Budget: Additional S$800 million set aside for COVID-19 Support Grant; S$100 one-off utilities credit

On Monday, MOH for the first time released a list of public places visited by community COVID-19 cases for more than 30 minutes, naming Jurong Point's NTUC FairPrice supermarket and Japanese food street as the first two locations.

People who were in the locations at the timings specified in the list should monitor their health closely for 14 days from the date of their visit, MOH said.

Those who have been identified as close contacts of confirmed cases would already have been notified, the ministry added.

The list will be updated on a rolling 14-day basis – the length of one incubation cycle.

706 MORE CASES DISCHARGED

A total of 706 more cases of COVID-19 infection have been discharged. In all, 16,444 have fully recovered from the infection and have been discharged from hospitals or community care facilities.

There are currently 585 confirmed cases who are still in hospital. Of these, most are stable or improving while eight are in critical condition in the intensive care unit. 

READ: Various measures in place to help home owners affected by construction delays: Lawrence Wong

Another 15,291 patients are isolated and cared for at community facilities. These are people who have mild symptoms, or are clinically well but still test positive for COVID-19. 

As of Tuesday, there are more people who have recovered from COVID-19 than active cases.

To date, 23 people have died have from complications due to COVID-19 infection.






FOURTH BUDGET 

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on Tuesday unveiled a new S$33 billion Budget focused on providing jobs and helping to tide workers and businesses through the “difficult period” of COVID-19.

The Fortitude Budget, which is Singapore's fourth of the year, comes as the nation prepares to exit its circuit breaker on Jun 1 and progressively lift measures in three phases from Jun 2.

"As we open up progressively, we will continue to give more support to businesses which are not yet ready to reopen, and workers who are still unable to resume work. The key is to reopen safely, and this needs to be done carefully," said Mr Heng in Parliament. 

MOh gfx May 26

The country has to "move cautiously" as it exits the circuit breaker, as there are still "hidden cases" of infection circulating among the general population, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong warned on Monday.

He cited the number of pre-school staff members who have tested positive for the virus through a mass proactive testing exercise of all pre-school employees.

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Source: CNA/dv/zl(mi)

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