SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 130 new locally transmitted COVID-19 infections as of noon on Friday (Jul 23), including 78 cases linked to the Jurong Fishery Port cluster and six to the cluster in KTV lounges.
As of Friday evening, a total of 665 cases have been linked to the Jurong Fishery Port/Hong Lim Market & Food Centre cluster, making it the largest active cluster in Singapore.
The KTV lounges cluster currently has 227 cases.
A total of 64 infections were linked to previous cases and already placed in quarantine, and 37 were detected through surveillance testing.
The remaining 29 infections were not linked to previous cases, said the Ministry of Health (MOH).
Two cases were people above the age of 70 who were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated and are at risk of serious illness, MOH added.
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There were also three imported cases who were placed on stay-home notice or isolated upon arrival.
One of these infections was detected upon arrival in Singapore, while two developed the illness during their stay-home notice or isolation.
In total, Singapore reported 133 new COVID-19 cases on Friday.
THREE NEW CLUSTERS
Three new COVID-19 clusters have been identified. The cluster linked to Case 65342 has a total of three cases while the clusters linked to Cases 65360 and 65484 have four and five cases respectively.
MOH did not provide further information on Cases 65342, 65360 and 65484.
Six clusters were closed as there have been no more cases linked to them for the past two incubation periods, said the ministry. The clusters are linked to ION Orchard, as well as Cases 64135, 64349, 64359, 64374 and 64444.
The other clusters that were closed are linked to a staff member at Guardian (ION Orchard), a financial consultant with Prudential, a foreign domestic worker, an analyst at Deutsche Bank and an equipment specialist at Singapore General Hospital.
There are currently a total of 26 active COVID-19 clusters in Singapore, ranging between three and 665 infections.
ANTIGEN RAPID TESTING SELF-TEST KITS
The Health Ministry, together with the People's Association, will distribute antigen rapid test (ART) self-test kits from Jul 24 to Jul 25 at Residents' Committee Centres near Admiralty Wet Market and Bukit Timah Market & Food Centre.
The self-test kit distribution is part of the ministry's investigations into cases of COVID-19 infection involving markets and food centres which are likely seeded by fishmongers who visited Jurong Fishery Port.
Those eligible for the kits are strongly encouraged to collect and use them, said MOH.
11 SENIORS HAVE FALLEN VERY ILL: MOH
MOH said the overall number of new cases in the community has increased from 178 cases in the week before to 961 cases in the past week.
“We are likely to continue to see high number of cases in the coming days as we step up efforts to detect them to contain their spread in the community,” the ministry added.
The number of unlinked cases in the community has also increased from 18 cases in the week before to 97 cases in the past week.
A total of 447 cases are currently warded in hospital, with most well and under observation.
There are currently 11 cases of serious illness requiring oxygen supplementation, and two in critical condition in the intensive care unit.
None among these 13 cases is fully vaccinated. Eleven people above 60 years old, who are completely unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, have fallen very ill, said MOH.
"There is continuing evidence that vaccination helps to prevent serious disease when one gets infected. Over the last 28 days, 10 local cases required oxygen supplementation, were admitted to ICU or passed away. Eight are unvaccinated, two are partially vaccinated and none was fully vaccinated," added the Health Ministry.
MORE SENIORS GETTING VACCINATED
In a Facebook post on Friday night, Health Minister Ong Ye Kung said more people aged 70 and above are getting vaccinated.
"For the past three days, the number of seniors aged 70 and above who came forward to get their first dose was about 1,000 a day, double the number before," he said.
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He acknowledged the efforts that have been made by general practitioners, volunteers, mobile vaccination teams, as well as friends and family of elderly residents to get them to come foward for their jabs.
"If we can keep this up for several days or weeks, hopefully we can push the vaccination rate amongst seniors to above 80 per cent," said Mr Ong.
As of Friday, Singapore has reported a total of 63,924 COVID-19 cases and 36 fatalities from the disease.