Singapore's COVID-19 cases cross 21,000 with 768 new infections; 5 new clusters identified

Singapore's COVID-19 cases cross 21,000 with 768 new infections; 5 new clusters identified

People in masks (2)
A woman seen wearing a protective face mask. (Photo: Gaya Chandramohan)

SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 768 new COVID-19 cases as of noon on Friday (May 8), taking the country's total to 21,707.  

Of the new cases, 750 are work permit holders residing in foreign worker dormitories, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) in its daily update. 

MOH said it continues to pick up many more cases among work permit holders residing in dormitories, including in factory-converted dormitories, because of extensive testing in these premises.

Seven other cases are work permit holders residing outside dormitories. MOH said the number of such cases has decreased, from an average of 14 cases per day in the week before, to an average of 12 per day in the past week.

MOH also reported 11 cases in the community, of which nine are Singapore citizens. The remaining two cases are a permanent resident and a work pass holder.

Five of the Singapore citizen cases are contacts of previously confirmed COVID-19 patients.

One of the five unlinked cases is a 65-year-old Singaporean woman who works as a cleaner at Changi Airport.

"The number of new cases in the community has decreased, from an average of 12 cases per day in the week before, to an average of 10 per day in the past week.

"The number of unlinked cases in the community has also decreased, from an average of six cases per day in the week before, to an average of five per day in the past week," MOH said.

Of the new cases, 93 per cent are linked to known clusters while the rest are pending contact tracing, said MOH in an update on Friday evening.

Further details can be found in MOH's daily situation report

MOH COVID-19 cases May 8 2020

NEW CASE FROM PUBLIC HEALTHCARE SECTOR

One of the new COVID-19 cases announced on Friday is a 35-year-old resident care associate at a nursing home operated by Ren Ci in Ang Mo Kio. The woman, known as Case 21161, is a work pass holder and has no recent travel history to affected countries or regions. 

The Filipino national was diagnosed with the coronavirus on Thursday after being tested as part of MOH’s ongoing surveillance tests at nursing homes, said the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) in a press release.

She is currently warded in an isolation room at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID). Prior to hospital admission, she had gone to work. 

"While at work, she had complied with enhanced precautionary measures undertaken by the nursing home, including the donning of necessary personal protective equipment when caring for residents at the home," said AIC.

More than 30 residents at Ren Ci who might have come into contact with the infected employee have been tested, and are negative for COVID-19, said Health Minister Gan Kim Yong at a COVID-19 multi-ministry task force press conference on Friday.

READ: Processes at COVID-19 community care facilities under review after several healthcare workers test positive

MOH has completed testing 9,000 employees across 80 nursing homes, as part of efforts by the Government to keep seniors safe amid the pandemic, said Mr Gan.

Extensive testing is also under way for 16,000 nursing home residents, which the Government aims to complete over the coming weeks.



MORE THAN 2,000 FULLY RECOVERED

MOH said 328 more patients were discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities. In all, 2,040 have fully recovered from the infection.

There are currently 1,245 confirmed cases still in hospital. Of these, most are stable or improving while 22 are in critical condition in the intensive care unit. 

A total of 18,402 are isolated and cared for at community facilities. These are those who have mild symptoms, or are clinically well but still test positive for COVID-19. 

As previously reported, 20 have died from complications due to COVID-19 infection.

READ: ‘Don’t rush to go out’ after businesses reopen, COVID-19 circuit breaker to ease gradually: Lawrence Wong

READ: Singapore's COVID-19 fatalities hit 20 after woman linked to Lee Ah Mooi home, man from Mustafa cluster die

5 NEW CLUSTERS

Five new clusters have also been identified - 25 Kaki Bukit Industrial Terrace, 63 Senoko Drive, 53 Sungei Kadut Loop, 11 Tech Park Crescent and 57 Tuas View Walk 2. 

Six more cases were also linked to Singapore's largest cluster at S11 Dormitory @ Punggol, bringing the total to 2,535 cases. 

MOH said that it has been monitoring existing clusters for any further transmission. 

"As there have been no more cases linked to Dover Court International School, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority Building and Lee Ah Mooi Old Age Home for the past two incubation periods, the clusters have now been closed."

Singapore's "circuit breaker", which has seen most businesses shuttered and residents staying home except to buy groceries or exercise alone, is scheduled to end in about three weeks. 

Ahead of the Jun 1 deadline, some stores have begun to reopen. 

Megamall Mustafa Centre, which was a COVID-19 cluster, reopened its supermarket on Wednesday, more than a month after it was closed. All other sections of the mall, which sells a range of products from clothes to shoes and electronics, will remain shut for now.

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Source: CNA/aa

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