NTUC Foodfare at Anchorvale to close amid 'likely ongoing transmission'; free COVID-19 tests for those who visited
SINGAPORE: Members of the public who visited NTUC Foodfare at 308 Anchorvale Road from May 13 to May 30 are encouraged to take a COVID-19 swab test after a cluster of cases were detected at the coffee shop.
"Our epidemiological investigations have found that there is likely ongoing transmission at the coffee shop," said the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Sunday (May 30).
The Foodfare outlet at Anchorvale has been closed to the public for two weeks from Sunday to break any potential chain of transmission and enable deep cleaning, said MOH. It will reopen on Jun 13.
The free swab test is intended to “pre-emptively mitigate any potential risk of wider, undetected community transmission”, said the MOH.
In a Facebook post on Sunday, Foodfare said that its staff would undergo COVID-19 tests during the closure of the Anchorvale outlet.
The company apologised for any inconvenience caused and said that it was "sparing no effort" to protect customers and staff.
NEW CLUSTER IDENTIFIED
The cluster at the Foodfare outlet at Anchorvale was identified by MOH on Sunday, with seven COVID-19 cases linked to it.
The first case in the cluster is a 33 year-old male Malaysia national who works as a kitchen assistant at Hua Zai Eating House. Identified as Case 63853, he was confirmed to have COVID-19 on Saturday.
Another 23-year-old Malaysian national, identified as Case 63854, works as a cook at West Grill Station (Anchorvale) and also tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday.
On Sunday, five new cases in the cluster were reported, including four kitchen assistants who work at Hua Zai HK Style Roasted Delight Rice Noodle in the Anchorvale coffee shop as well as Hua Zai HK Style Roasted Delights in Hougang Green Shopping Mall.
The four kitchen assistants are household contacts of the 33-year-old kitchen assistant at Hua Zai Eating House. They were placed on quarantine on Saturday after being identified as close contacts.
Cases 63883 and 63885 work at Hua Zai HK Style Roasted Delights at Fu Fa Food Court in Hougang Green. Aged 47 and 22 respectively, both men are Malaysian.
Case 63883 developed a cough on Saturday and was tested for COVID-19 during quarantine, with the positive result returning the next day. His serology test result is negative.
Case 63885 developed a cough on Wednesday but did not seek medical attention. He was tested during quarantine with the positive result arriving on Sunday.
Cases 63884 and 63886 work at the Anchorvale location of Hua Zai HK Style Roasted Delight Rice Noodle. The former is a 21-year-old Vietnamese man while the latter is a 27-year-old Malaysian man.
Cases 63884 developed a cough on the same day he was quarantined. He was tested for COVID-19 on Sunday, with the result coming back positive.
Case 63886 developed loss of taste on Friday but did not seek medical attention. He was tested while in quarantine on Saturday, with the positive result returning on Sunday. He also developed a cough on Sunday.
The fifth case in the cluster reported on Sunday works at the food court in Anchorvale as a chef at Rice Garden.
Identified as Case 63874, he is a close contact of Cases 63884 and 63886.
He developed a cough and fever on Friday and sought medical treatment at a general practitioner clinic on the same day, where he was tested for COVID-19.
His test result came back positive for COVID-19 infection the next day.
From May 31 to Jun 13, those who want to take the swab test may call or book an appointment at Fullerton Health Testing Centre located at Szechuan Court, Raffles City Shopping Centre.
They may also walk in to Raffles Hospital at 585 North Bridge Road or Raffles Medical at Shaw Centre Orchard.
Members of the public may also book an appointment at these designated regional screening centres:
- Former Da Qiao Primary School, 8 Ang Mo Kio Street 54
- Former Coral Primary School, 20 Pasir Ris Street 51
- Former Bedok North Secondary School, 20 Jln Damai
People can also call in advance to book an appointment at any of the Swab and Send Home Public Health Preparedness Clinics (SASH PHPCs) islandwide.
MOH added that swabbing for children is not available at the regional screening centres and can be done at selected SASH PHPCs.
Only asymptomatic individuals will be accepted at the regional screening centres and other testing venues. Those who are feeling ill should see a doctor or visit a SASH PHPC.
People may also be redirected to another testing venue in the event that regional screening centres are crowded, said MOH.
Those who are taking the swab test should bring along their photo identification and declare the date that they last visited NTUC Foodfare at 308 Anchorvale Road.
As of Sunday, NTUC Foodfare was listed four times on MOH's list of locations visited by COVID-19 cases during their infectious period.
Fu Fa Food Court at Hougang Green was listed six times.