COVID-19: Singapore reports 305 more cases, 495 additional recoveries

·Editorial Team
·4-min read
A woman wearing a protective face mask passes covered mannequins as shops remain closed amid the outbreak here on 15 May, 2020. (PHOTO: Reuters)
A woman wearing a protective face mask passes covered mannequins as shops remain closed amid the outbreak here on 15 May, 2020. (PHOTO: Reuters)

SINGAPORE — The Ministry of Health (MOH) confirmed on Monday (18 May) 305 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore, bringing the total to 28,343, as well as 495 more recoveries.

The ministry also reported four additional clusters linked to 2 Kampong Ampat, 43 Tuas View Close, 117 Tuas View Walk 1, and 7 Woodlands Industrial Park E1.

Of the 305 new cases, 303 are foreign workers living in dormitories, said the ministry, while two remaining cases are Singaporeans.

They are a 50-year-old man who went to work at 1020 Tai Seng Avenue, identified as a cluster, and a 58-year-old woman – identified as an unlinked case – who went to work at Bishan MRT station.

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There are no new cases among foreign workers residing outside dorms. Overall, only one per cent of the new cases have no established links.

“The lower number of cases today is partly due to fewer tests being processed as one testing laboratory is reviewing its processes following an earlier apparatus calibration issue, and will need time to ramp up its testing capacity,” said the MOH.

The ministry added the number of new cases in the community has decreased from an average of seven cases per day in the week before to an average of three per day in the past week.

The number of unlinked cases in the community has remained stable at an average of two per day in the past two weeks.

The number of new cases amongst foreign workers residing outside dorms has decreased from an average of four cases per day in the week before to an average of one per day in the past week, the MOH said.

It added that the cluster linked to ABC Hostel at 3 Jalan Kubor is now considered closed as there have been no more cases linked to the place for the past two incubation periods or 28 days.

Dozens of clusters linked to foreign worker dorms have been identified thus far, including Singapore’s largest cluster of 2,583 cases linked to S11 Dormitory@Punggol, followed by Sungei Tengah Lodge linked to 1,844 cases and Tuas View Dormitory linked to 1,287 cases.

The three are among the 25 dorms that have been gazetted as isolation areas, where they account for some 22 per cent of the total 26,090 infected cases across all dorms. Some 400,000 foreign workers live in dorms here in Singapore.

Some 20,000 infected foreign workers are expected to be discharged by end-May, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong at a press conference last Tuesday.

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(For more details on the clusters, read here.)

Over 9,800 discharged in total

With 495 more cases of COVID-19 infection discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities, a total of 9,835 cases here have fully recovered from the infection, said the ministry on Sunday.

Most of the 1,036 hospitalised cases are stable or improving, while 12 are in critical condition in the intensive care unit, down from 16 on Sunday.

A total of 17,450 cases who have mild symptoms or are clinically well but still test positive for the virus are isolated and cared for at community facilities.

Apart from 22 patients who have died from COVID-19 complications, nine others who tested positive for the virus have died from unrelated causes, including three whose deaths were attributed to a heart attack and two 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.

It had also noted that 86 male foreign workers aged 25 to 59 died due to heart disease in Singapore in 2018.

As of 10 May, the ministry has conducted 246,254 swab tests, of which 186,183 were done on unique individuals.

This translates to around 43,200 swabs conducted per 1 million total population, and about 32,700 unique individuals swabbed per 1 million total population.

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