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17 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore, all imported; last local cluster closes

17 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore, all imported; last local cluster closes

People wearing face masks are seen at Singapore Changi Airport on Nov 2, 2020. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo)

SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 17 new COVID-19 cases as of noon on Thursday (Mar 25), all imported infections. 

No new cases were found in the community and in foreign workers' dormitories, said the Ministry of Health (MOH).

This marks the 13th consecutive day with no locally transmitted cases.

The last cluster involving the Singapore Airlines cabin crew member has also been declared closed as there have been no cases linked to it for the past two incubation periods or 28 days. 

The 41-year-old SIA employee was confirmed to have COVID-19 on Feb 9. Her husband and domestic helper later contracted the disease, taking the cluster to three cases.

Among the new infections reported on Thursday, the sole symptomatic case is a Singaporean woman who returned from India. The 42-year-old woman experienced symptoms on Mar 24 and was confirmed to have COVID-19 on the same day. 

A permanent resident who returned from India, a dependant's pass holder who arrived from Nepal and two work pass holders who arrived from India are also among the imported cases.

There were also 11 work permit holders who arrived from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia and the Philippines, of whom seven are foreign domestic workers.

The remaining case is a short-term visit pass holder who arrived from Ecuador for a work project. 

The imported cases were all placed on stay-home notice or isolated upon their arrival in Singapore, said the ministry. 

MOH also provided an update on its special testing operations at UTown Residence North Tower at the National University of Singapore. 

A total of 438 people were swabbed and all the results have come back negative. 

The testing was carried out after COVID-19 viral fragments were detected on Mar 21 from the testing of a wastewater sample collected on Mar 20 at the residence. 

"Our investigations indicate that the COVID-19 viral fragments detected in the wastewater sample were likely due to viral shedding from a recovered past infection amongst the residents," said MOH.

READ: Weddings, live performances to have increased capacities with pre-event COVID-19 tests

Eight more cases have been discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities, bringing Singapore's total recoveries to 60,086.

There are 25 cases still in hospital. Most of them are stable or improving, and none is in the intensive care unit. Another 112 are being isolated and cared for at community facilities.

READ: COVID-19 vaccination now open to Singapore residents aged 45 to 59

Singapore residents aged 45 to 59 can now register their interest for the COVID-19 vaccine online at

"With the vaccination for the prioritised groups well under way, we are now ready to expand the vaccination programme to younger age groups in the population," said Health Minister Gan Kim Yong at a press conference by the COVID-19 multi-ministry task force on Wednesday.

Registrants will receive within a few days an SMS with a personalised URL to book their appointments. However, it may take longer if there is a delay in the vaccine delivery schedule, said MOH.

READ: COVID-19: More employees may return to the workplace, split teams not required from Apr 5 

READ: Back to the office: 7 things you need to know as Singapore shifts to more flexible way of working amid COVID-19

The task force also announced that more people may return to the workplace from Apr 5, and split team arrangements are no longer mandatory. The current cap on the time an employee spends at the workplace will also be lifted.

Employers are still "strongly encouraged" to stagger start times and implement flexible working hours, said the task force.

Some events like weddings and live performances will be allowed to have more attendees from next month if pre-event COVID-19 testing is implemented.

Those who have taken both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine at least two weeks before the event will not have to be tested.

As of Thursday, Singapore has reported a total of 60,253 COVID-19 cases. 

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Source: CNA/dv/zl


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