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MOH investigating if COVID-19 rules breached after new family cluster across 2 households had gatherings

MOH investigating if COVID-19 rules breached after new family cluster across 2 households had gatherings

File photo of beachgoers at East Coast Park after the COVID-19 circuit breaker. (Photo: Jeremy Long)

SINGAPORE: The Ministry of Health is investigating if safe distancing rules were breached after a new family cluster of at least five people from two households had taken part in gatherings.

Five of the eight new community cases reported on Sunday (Aug 30) are linked to a 13-year-old COVID-19 case, who was reported on Thursday. Two confirmed cases reported on Friday are also linked to the 13-year-old. 

The five cases reported on Sunday are part of a “family cluster” involving individuals across two households, said MOH.

“These individuals had participated in family gatherings, and investigations are ongoing to see if there were any breaches of safe distancing rules,” the health ministry said.

“We take a serious view of such breaches and will not hesitate to take enforcement actions against any offenders.”

4 CHILDREN IN CLUSTER

Four children, aged between 12 and 17 years old, are part of the new family cluster. All cases in the cluster are Singaporeans.

The 13-year-old boy - who had onset of symptoms on Aug 20 - was reported as an unlinked COVID-19 case on Thursday, with MOH saying that epidemiological investigations were ongoing and that all identified close contacts had been isolated and placed in quarantine.

On Friday, two confirmed cases were linked as contacts of the 13-year-old boy. The 50-year-old woman and 51-year-old man were among those placed in quarantine earlier and tested positive for COVID-19. They were symptomatic as well.

On Sunday, five more cases were confirmed by MOH - all linked to the 13-year-old boy. All five tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday while in quarantine, said the health ministry.

They include two men - a 20-year-old and a 21-year-old. The 21-year-old had gone to Bedok Camp II after the onset of symptoms on Thursday, MOH added. 

The three other cases reported on Sunday were a 12-year-old boy, a 14-year-old girl and a 17-year-old girl. The 12-year-old was the only one out of the five who was asymptomatic.

Under current COVID-19 safety measures, only small-group gatherings of up to five people can meet, with no mixing between groups.

Within homes, households may only receive up to five visitors at any one time.

Earlier this month, it was announced that households with more than five people who wish to dine out may book more than one table to accommodate everyone. They should limit their interaction between tables, MOH said. 

READ: Households with more than 5 people may book more than 1 table in F&B outlets

Singapore reported 54 more COVID-19 cases on Sunday, with eight in the community and seven imported infections.

MOH also announced a new community cluster of four cases at SLR Revolution camera shop at Excelsior Shopping Centre, after two employees and a customer were confirmed to have the coronavirus. The remaining case is a contact of one of the employees.

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Editor's note: An earlier version of this story said the 21-year-old who tested positive for COVID-19 and was part of the family cluster had experienced the onset of symptoms on Saturday. This has been changed to Thursday following a correction from MOH.

Source: CNA/mi

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