SINGAPORE: Four community cases – three unlinked and one linked to a cluster – were among the 25 new COVID-19 infections reported in Singapore as of noon on Friday (May 7), said the Ministry of Health (MOH).
The remaining 21 cases were imported and placed on stay-home notice or isolated upon arrival in Singapore.
The sole linked community case reported on Friday is a 58-year-old Singaporean who is currently unemployed.
The man, known as Case 62906, is a family member and household contact of a Singaporean who works as a trailer truck driver at Brani Terminal and Pasir Panjang Terminal (Case 62824), as well as a permanent resident who is a full-time national serviceman (Case 62877).
As he had been identified as a close contact of Case 62824, he was placed on quarantine on May 4. The next day, he developed chills at night and reported his symptoms.
He then developed a fever on May 6 and was tested for COVID-19. His test result came back positive on the same day and he was taken in an ambulance to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital. His serology test result is negative.
Case 62906 has been added to the cluster linked to Case 61822, a 23-year-old Indian national who works as a lashing specialist at Pasir Panjang Terminal. The cluster now has a total of six infections.
3 COMMUNITY CASES ARE UNLINKED
Three of the other community cases reported on Friday are unlinked.
Case 62894 works as a senior executive at IGWT at 8 Shenton Way. The 48-year-old permanent resident has largely been working from home, said MOH. His work also entails boarding shipping vessels periodically and he last boarded one on Mar 1.
He had been in Russia from Oct 30 last year to Jan 30, and served a stay-home notice at a dedicated facility until Feb 13. His test taken on Feb 12 during stay-home notice was negative for COVID-19.
He is asymptomatic and was detected when he was tested on May 5 as part of MOH’s testing protocol for shore-based personnel boarding vessels.
His test result came back positive the next day and he was taken in an ambulance to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital. His serology test result is pending.
“His Ct value was very high, which is indicative of a low viral load and he could be shedding minute fragments of the virus RNA from a past infection which are no longer transmissible and infective to others.
“However given that we are not able to definitively conclude when he had been infected, we will take all the necessary public health actions as a precautionary measure,” said MOH.
Case 62925 is a 72-year-old Singaporean man who is a retiree. The man was taken to Raffles Hospital for a heart condition on May 5 and was tested for COVID-19 the next day even though he was asymptomatic.
His test result came back positive on May 7. MOH said his Ct value was “very high” and his serology test result has come back positive. He could be shedding minute fragments of the virus RNA from a past infection which are no longer transmissible and infective to others, added the Health Ministry.
“But given that we are not able to definitively conclude when he had been infected, we will take all the necessary public health actions as a precautionary measure,” MOH added.
The man received his first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine on Feb 22 and the second dose on Mar 15.
The man also routinely visits Tan Tock Seng Hospital Eye Centre for an eye condition, and his last visit was on Apr 23.
“He had not been at any of the affected wards. Our investigations so far have found no evidence that he is linked to the (TTSH) cluster. Epidemiological investigations are ongoing,” said MOH.
The remaining community case is a 53-year-old Singaporean woman who works as a cleaner at Park Avenue Rochester, a dedicated stay-home notice facility. Her work does not entail interacting with the guests on stay-home notice at the hotel, said MOH.
She developed her first symptoms on May 5, and sought medical treatment. Two days later, she was confirmed to have COVID-19.
The woman completed the full vaccination regimen on Feb 16.
4 SINGAPOREANS AMONG IMPORTED CASES
The remaining 21 cases reported on Friday were imported and were placed on stay-home notice or isolated upon arrival in Singapore.
They include four Singaporeans and 11 permanent residents who returned from India.
Two are work pass holders who arrived from Germany and the Maldives. Another three are work permit holders who arrived from Bangladesh, Myanmar and the Philippines, of whom one is a foreign domestic worker.
The remaining imported case is a short-term visit pass holder who arrived in India for her upcoming marriage to her Singaporean fiance.
READ: COVID-19: Singapore stops accepting new entry applications for work pass holders from higher-risk countries
MOH said the arrivals from the Indian sub-continent had already come into Singapore before the restrictions on travel were imposed.
Since 11.59pm on Apr 23, all long-term pass holders and short-term visitors with recent travel history, including transit, to India within the past 14 days were not be allowed entry into or to transit through Singapore.
These border measures were also applied from 11.59pm on May 1 to all long-term pass holders and short-term visitors with recent travel history, including transit, to Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
No new infections were reported in migrant workers’ dormitories.
2 CASES IN CRITICAL CONDITION
MOH said the overall number of new cases in the community has increased from 35 cases in the week before to 43 cases in the past week.
The number of unlinked cases in the community has also increased from six cases in the week before to nine cases in the past week.
Among the 166 cases reported from May 1 to May 7, a total of 52 cases have tested positive for their serology tests while 82 have tested negative. A further 32 serology test results are pending.
Thirty-three more cases have been discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities, bringing Singapore’s total recoveries to 60,906.
There are 138 cases still in hospital. Most of them are stable or improving, and two are in critical condition in the intensive care unit. Another 236 are being isolated and cared for at community facilities.