16 new COVID cases in Singapore, including dorm resident and 1-year-old boy

Shoppers along Singapore's Orchard Road in preparation for the festive season.
Shoppers along Singapore's Orchard Road in preparation for the festive season. (PHOTO: Zakaria Zainal/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — The Ministry of Health (MOH) confirmed 16 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore including one locally-transmitted case as of Tuesday (15 December), taking the country’s total to 58,341.

The remaining fifteen cases are imported. They were either placed on the stay-home notice or isolated upon their arrival here and subsequently tested.

“Amongst the new cases today, 13 are asymptomatic, and were detected from our proactive screening and surveillance, while two were symptomatic,” said the ministry.

The sole local transmission, who resides in a migrant worker dormitory here, is asymptomatic and was detected when he took a COVID-19 pre-departure test in preparation for his return to China.

His previous tests from the rostered routine testing had been negative, said the MOH. His serological test result has come back positive, which indicates likely past infection.

As a precautionary measure, all his close contacts at the dormitory and his workplace have been placed on quarantine, the ministry added.

Amongst the 15 imported cases, three are Singaporeans who returned from India, the UK, and the US. Six of them are work pass or permit holders currently employed in Singapore who arrived from Brazil, India, and Indonesia.

Two are a dependant’s pass holder who arrived from Spain and a student’s pass holder who arrived from India.

The remaining four are short-term visit pass holders. Two, including a one-year-old baby boy who arrived from Indonesia, are family members of Singaporeans or permanent residents.

The other two arrived from Russia to participate in a mixed martial arts sporting event and from Australia on an Air Travel Pass. Both had been tested for COVID-19 upon their arrival here, and were isolated while waiting for their test results, said the MOH.

They were subsequently conveyed to the hospital when their tests came back positive.

The MOH noted that the number of new cases in the community has remained low, with no new cases in the past week.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced on Monday that Singapore’s Phase 3 reopening will begin on 28 December as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to ease with a fall in the number of locally transmitted cases.

99% of total cases have recovered

With 23 more patients discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities on Tuesday, 58,233 cases – or 99.8 per cent of the total – have fully recovered from the infection.

Most of the 25 hospitalised cases are stable or improving, and none are in the intensive care unit.

A total of 54 patients – with mild symptoms or are clinically well but still test positive – are isolated and cared for at community facilities.

Apart from 29 patients who have died from COVID-19 complications, 15 others who tested positive for the virus were determined to have died from unrelated causes, including three whose deaths were attributed to a heart attack and another four, whose deaths were attributed to coronary heart disease.

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