COVID-19: Singapore reports 213 new cases; 11 community cases

Shoppers wearing protective masks walk past a boutique shop at Orchard Road in Singapore. (PHOTO: Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — The Ministry of Health (MOH) reported 213 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore as of Sunday (28 June) noon, bringing the total to 43,459.

Of them, 11 are classified as community cases, while the remaining are foreign workers living in dormitories.

Of the 11 cases, eight had been picked up as a result of proactive surveillance and screening, and one had already been placed on quarantine earlier.

There are six Singaporean cases, and among them, one (Case 43297) was tested as part proactive screening of those 13 years old and above who are diagnosed with acute respiratory infection (ARI) at first presentation to a doctor. She is a 15-year-old student at East Spring Secondary School who had not gone to school since onset of symptoms on 25 June.

Another case (Case 43315) had been identified as a contact of a previously confirmed case, and had already been quarantined earlier. He was swabbed during quarantine to verify his status.

Two cases (Cases 43316 and 43317) were detected due to proactive surveillance of persons working at dormitories or deployed to frontline COVID-19 operations, even though they were asymptomatic.

Epidemiological investigations are ongoing for the remaining two cases (Cases 43429 and 43483).

There are five cases involving work pass/work permit holders and all of them (Cases 43426, 43484, 43485, 43486 and 43487) were detected from proactive screening of workers in essential services, even though they were asymptomatic.

One new cluster was announced – a dormitory at 5 Kaki Bukit Industrial Terrace.

Details of cases on 28 June 2020. (Table: Ministry of Health)

Dormitories cleared of COVID-19

Dozens of clusters linked to foreign worker dorms have been identified thus far, including Singapore’s largest cluster of 2,774 cases linked to S11 Dormitory@Punggol, followed by Sungei Tengah Lodge with 2,055 cases, Jurong Penjuru Dormitory with 1,809 cases, Cassia @ Penjuru with 1,474 cases and Tuas View Dormitory with 1,409 cases.

These dorms, the top five clusters with the highest number of cases here, account for over 20 per cent of the total infected workers living in dorms. Some 400,000 such workers live in such residences here.

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Tuesday that 31 more dorms have been cleared of COVID-19: 27 factory-converted dormitories and four construction temporary quarters.

Four blocks for recovered workers in three purpose-built dorms have also been cleared, the MOM added.

This takes the total number to 163 dorms and 18 blocks for recovered workers in 11 purpose-built dorms cleared of COVID-19.

As of Monday, about 79,000 foreign workers have been cleared of COVID-19, including those residing in government-provided accommodation facilities, said the MOM. Last week, a forecast of dormitories and blocks to be cleared from now till August onwards was published on the ministry’s website.

Over 37,500 cases have fully recovered

With 345 more patients discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities on Sunday, 37,508 cases have fully recovered from the infection.

Most of the 184 hospitalised cases are stable or improving, while one is in critical condition in the intensive care unit.

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

Apart from 26 patients who have died from COVID-19 complications, 12 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, including the 48-year-old male Indian national, whose deaths were attributed to coronary heart disease.

“Only cases where the attending doctor or pathologist attributes the primary or underlying cause of death as due to COVID-19 infection will be added to the COVID-19 death count,” said the MOH in previous press releases, adding that the method of assessment is consistent with international practices for classifying deaths.

As of 15 June, the ministry has conducted 576,189 swab tests, of which 340,894 were done on unique individuals. This translates to around 101,100 swabs conducted per 1 million total population, and about 59,800 unique individuals swabbed per 1 million total population.

Singapore entered Phase 2 of its reopening – with various safe distancing measures still in place – on 19 June. This phase is expected to last up to six months or longer, according to authorities.

Singapore’s General Election will take place on 10 July during this phase.

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