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14 new COVID-19 community cases in Singapore; CGH porter among 2 unlinked infections

14 new COVID-19 community cases in Singapore; CGH porter among 2 unlinked infections

Commuters wearing protective face masks leave an MRT station in Singapore on Aug 17, 2020. (File photo: Reuters/Edgar Su)

SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 14 new COVID-19 cases in the community on Thursday (Jun 24), including two with no links to previous cases.

One of the unlinked cases was a 35-year-old Singaporean man who works as a porter at Changi General Hospital, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) in its daily update. He was fully vaccinated.

Identified as Case 64413, he was tested for COVID-19 on Jun 22 as part of routine testing, the positive result returning the next day.

Earlier COVID-19 tests from rostered routine testing  - the last being on Jun 8 - were all negative for the coronavirus.

"He has tested preliminarily positive for the Delta variant and is pending further confirmatory tests," said MOH.

His serology test result was negative for the N antigen, which suggests the presence of early infection.

The other unlinked case was a 78-year-old woman who is a retiree. She was also fully vaccinated.

She developed fever and a runny nose on Jun 22, and sought medical treatment at a general practitioner clinic the next day, where she underwent an antigen rapid test (ART) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test.

The ART results came back the same day and she was immediately isolated. The PCR positive result came on Jun 23.



LINKED CASES

Of the 12 linked cases, 11 had already been placed on quarantine while one was detected through surveillance.

The 115 Bukit Merah View Market and Food Centre cluster grew to 85 cases, with three new infections reported on Thursday.

Among them were a 34-year-old permanent resident who is a homemaker and a 33-year-old -  identified as Case 64435 - who works part-time at J&T Express Singapore. 

There was also a 12-year-old male Singaporean child who studies at Crest Secondary School. He was last in school on May 18.

He is a family member and household contact of cases 64385 and 64435. 

The child was placed on quarantine on Jun 22. His positive test result came back the next day.

A case was added to a cluster involving Case 64135, a 57-year-old promoter at a Guardian outlet in ION Orchard.

The new case was a 29-year-old man who is currently unemployed.

A case was also added to the Case 64184 cluster, involving a 27-year-old male Indian national who works as an engineer at Ecoxplore.

The addition was a 72-year-old retired woman who was placed on phone surveillance on Jun 18. She was fully vaccinated.

Four cases were added to the Case 64349 cluster, involving a 24-year-old man who works at Prudential. They are all in their twenties. 

One is unemployed, while the others work at Skyworks Global, NCS and Unity Assurance.

The Case 64359 cluster, involving an 81-year-old retired man, saw two new cases, an engineer at SIA Engineering Company and a senior executive at Victoryland.

The latter is a household contact of Case 64359 and mostly works from home.  

There was also a 74-year-old retired woman who tested positive after being placed on quarantine. She is a family member and household contact of a previous case.

Three clusters were closed after reporting no new cases for the past 28 days. They are the clusters linked to Cases 63515 and 63708, and the cluster at the Harvest @ Woodlands dormitory. 




IMPORTED CASES

There were also nine imported cases, all of which had been placed on stay-home notice upon their arrival in Singapore.

Four were Singaporeans and permanent residents returning from India. Three were foreign domestic workers holding work permits arriving from Indonesia. Two were short-term visit pass holders from Bangladesh here for work projects.

No new infections were reported in migrant workers' dormitories.

In all, Singapore reported 23 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday.

FOUR CASES IN CRITICAL CONDITION

Twenty-seven more cases of COVID-19 infection were discharged, bringing the total number that has recovered to 62,140.

There were 136 confirmed cases in hospital, including four in critical condition in the intensive care unit.

A total of 182 were isolated and cared for at community facilities.

Overall, the number of new cases in the community decreased from 93 cases in the week before to 92 cases in the past week.

The number of unlinked cases in the community also increased from 13 cases in the week before to 22 cases in the past week.

Among the 127 confirmed cases reported from Jun 18 to Jun 24, 36 cases tested positive for their serology tests, 79 tested negative, and 12 test results were pending.

The health ministry also said it had concluded its testing of residents living in the Redhill area on Jun 23.

In total, 1,972 residents and visitors of 81, 82 and 83 Redhill Lane, and 87, 88, 89 and 90 Redhill Close were tested.

A total of 1,969 individuals were found to be negative for COVID-19 infection while three (Cases 64379, 64380, and 64405) tested positive for COVID-19, MOH said.

LOCATIONS VISITED BY COMMUNITY CASES

Several shopping malls in Orchard Road and Geylang Bahru Market and Food Centre were added to a list of public places visited by COVID-19 cases during their infectious period

Several supermarkets including an NTUC FairPrice Finest outlet in Hougang and a Sheng Siong outlet at McNair Road were also on the list.

The full list of places:

(Image: MOH)

READ: COVID-19 task force shares broad plan for new normal with possible home recovery and travel

READ: Singapore cuts stay-home notice for new travellers from higher-risk places to 14 days; regular COVID-19 self-test required

STAY-HOME NOTICE SHORTENED FOR TRAVELLERS FROM HIGHER-RISK COUNTRIES

The Health Ministry has shortened the stay-home notice period for new travellers from higher-risk countries or regions, it announced on Wednesday. 

Travellers from places classified as higher-risk will now serve a 14-day stay-home notice, down from 21 days. 

All countries and regions are considered higher-risk except Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Hong Kong, Macau, mainland China and New Zealand. 

These travellers will be required to test themselves regularly with self-administered antigen rapid test (ART) kits in addition to the existing polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests. 

The decision was based on updated evidence on the "emerging variant of concern" gathered over the past month, including its incubation period, MOH said. 

As of Thursday, Singapore has reported 62,493 COVID-19 cases.

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Source: CNA/vc(rw)

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