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93 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; student from Vietnam among imported infections

93 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore; student from Vietnam among imported infections

Orchard Road on Jun 19, the first day of Phase 2 of Singapore's reopening. (Photo: Jeremy Long)

SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 93 new COVID-19 cases as of noon on Wednesday (Aug 19), including two in the community and six imported infections, said the Ministry of Health (MOH).

This brings the country's total number of cases to 56,031.

Both the community cases are work permit holders living outside dormitories and all six imported cases were placed on stay-home notices upon their arrival in Singapore, said MOH.

Among the imported cases was a 23-year-old student's pass holder who arrived from Vietnam on Aug 7.

Two girls, aged three and seven, were also among the imported cases. The dependant's pass holders arrived from India on Aug 10, and are linked to a previous case.

Two other imported cases were Singaporeans who returned from India on Aug 7 and from the United Arab Emirates on Aug 8. 

The remaining case is a work permit holder currently employed in Singapore, who arrived from China on Aug 7.

All the imported cases were tested while serving their stay-home notices.

READ: All remaining quarantine facilities in migrant worker dormitories cleared of COVID-19 - MOM

2 COMMUNITY CASES

The two community cases, who were asymptomatic, were detected from MOH's periodic testing of workers in essential services who are living outside the dormitories.

"Epidemiological investigations of the cases are in progress. In the meantime, all their identified close contacts have been isolated and placed on quarantine, and will be tested at the start and end of their quarantine period so that we can detect asymptomatic cases," said the health ministry.

"We will also conduct serological tests for their household contacts to determine if these cases could have been infected by them."

The ministry said the number of new cases in the community has remained stable, at an average of two cases per day in the past two weeks.

The number of unlinked cases in the community has also remained stable, at an average of one case per day in the past two weeks.

"We will continue to closely monitor these numbers, as well as the cases detected through our surveillance programme," said MOH.

The remaining 85 cases reported on Wednesday were work permit holders living in dormitories.

There are currently about 16,800 workers who are still serving out their quarantine period.

"These workers will be tested when their quarantine ends, and we expect the case counts to remain high in the coming days, before tapering down thereafter," said MOH.

Three dormitories have been cleared by the inter-agency task force.

These dormitories - located at 2 Fan Yoong Road, 10 Shaw Road and 15 Tuas View Square - now house only recovered individuals and those who have recently tested negative for the coronavirus, said MOH, adding that the clusters are now closed.

293 TESTED AFTER CASES VISITED KTV LOUNGE

MOH has contacted 321 people who visited the Jewel Music Box KTV at HomeTeamNS Khatib on Aug 1 and Aug 2 after three COVID-19 cases visited the KTV lounge on the affected dates.

The health ministry said it has "facilitated COVID-19 testing for them" as a precautionary measure, and that the risk of infection for visitors was "assessed to be low".

A total of 293 individuals have been swabbed, and 193 test results have been processed. 

"All 193 test results have come back negative for COVID-19, including four individuals who had reported acute respiratory infection symptoms, and were conveyed to the hospital for further medical assessment," said MOH.

The remaining 100 swabs are pending test results. 

MOH said it is facilitating testing for the remaining 28 people who have yet to be swabbed.



277 MORE DISCHARGED

Another 277 more COVID-19 patients have been discharged from hospitals or released from community isolation facilities. In all, 52,810 have fully recovered from the infection.

MOH reported that 87 COVID-19 patients are still in hospital. Of these, most are stable or improving, and none is in the intensive care unit. 

A total of 3,107 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.

Twenty-seven people in Singapore have died from complications due to COVID-19.

MAP: All the places that COVID-19 community cases visited while they were infectious

The Ministry of Manpower announced on Wednesday that it has cleared all dormitories of COVID-19, including the standalone blocks serving as isolation or quarantine facilities.

All residents in these blocks have either completed their isolation or quarantine, or have been moved to other government facilities depending on their health status.

To prevent a second wave of infections in the cleared dormitories, MOM said it has adopted a "multi-layered strategy". This includes implementing safe distancing measures and grouping workers according to the type of industries they work in.

In response to CNA's queries, MOH and MOM on Tuesday said about 100 new COVID-19 cases have been detected in migrant worker dormitories previously given the all-clear from the coronavirus.

Some of them had resumed working, and the cases were picked up through routine testing.

READ: Infectious COVID-19 mutation may be 'a good thing', says Paul Tambyah

READ: Extra stimulus for aerospace, aviation and tourism sectors; Singaporeans to get S$320m worth of local tourism credits

As a result of the new cases, about 7,000 migrant workers were quarantined and less than 2 per cent of them were found to have contracted the coronavirus, said the ministries. 

"We have taken timely actions to contain and isolate the COVID-19 positive cases. We have also taken aggressive actions to contain, trace and isolate the close contacts," they said.

"To date, (more than) 60 per cent of cases have been closed. The measures taken have resulted in effective containment with only small numbers of additional cases detected."

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Source: CNA/kv

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