Fully vaccinated nurse at TTSH has COVID-19, 4 others preliminarily positive: MOH

Tan Tock Seng Hospital. (SCREENGRAB: Google Maps StreetView)
Tan Tock Seng Hospital. (SCREENGRAB: Google Maps StreetView)

SINGAPORE — A fully-vaccinated nurse at the Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) was infected with COVID-19, leading to a lockdown of the ward she works in, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Wednesday (28 April).

All patients and staff who have been in the affected ward have been tested, and four more – three patients and a doctor – have tested preliminarily positive for COVID-19 so far, added the ministry.

The TTSH nurse is one of three unlinked local community cases reported on Wednesday, out of a total of 23 new cases.

She is a 46-year-old Filipino woman who is deployed at Ward 9D, a general ward in the hospital.

The woman developed a cough, sore throat and body aches on 27 April, and sought medical treatment at the TTSH.

Her test result came back positive for COVID-19 on the same day, and she was warded at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID). Her serology test result is pending, said the MOH.

The nurse had received her first dose of COVID-19 vaccine on 26 January, and the second dose on 18 February, the ministry added.

"The COVID-19 vaccine is effective in preventing symptomatic disease for the vast majority of those vaccinated, but it is possible for vaccinated individuals to get infected," it said.

Following the detection of the woman as a COVID-19 case, the hospital locked down the affected ward, the MOH said.

"As a precautionary measure, all staff who treated the infected patients, as well as all visitors, patients and staff working in Ward 9D will be placed on quarantine. Epidemiological investigations and contact tracing are ongoing," added the ministry.

In a statement about the cases, TTSH said close staff contacts have been swabbed and are being placed on leave of absence pending further investigations while it is also swabbing and isolating all patients at the affected ward.

"Visitors will not be allowed to the ward till further notice. As a further precaution we are tightening our ward visiting policy till further notice allowing only two pre-registered visitors throughout a patient's stay," said TTSH, adding that it will also be swabbing all staff in the main hospital’s ward block.

The MOH said as further tests are being conducted for the four preliminary cases, they have not been included in Wednesday's case count.

With the 23 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in Singapore on Wednesday, the country's total case count now stands at 61,086.

Wednesday marks the third day in a row with reported local cases.

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