3 new COVID clusters in Singapore, including at Blk 506 Hougang Ave 8

·Editorial Team
·8-min read
People are silhouetted at sunrise along with vessels anchored along the southern coast on May 30, 2021 in Singapore. Singapore enters a month long heightened alert from May 16 to June 13 to curb the spread of COVID-19 cases in the local community. New restrictions on movements and activities have been introduced such as limiting social interaction to two, prohibiting dining out and a reduced operating capacity at shopping malls, offices and attractions. (Photo by Suhaimi Abdullah/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
People are silhouetted at sunrise along with vessels anchored along the southern coast on 30 May, 2021, in Singapore. (PHOTO: NurPhoto via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — The Ministry of Health (MOH) on Thursday (3 June) reported 45 new COVID-19 cases in Singapore, taking the country's total case count to 62,145.

Of them, 35 are local cases in the community, including 22 infections – who have been quarantined earlier – linked to a new cluster at the MINDSville@Napiri Adult Disability Home. The cluster, announced on Wednesday, is now linked to 27 infections.

Of the other 13 cases in the community, 12 are linked to previous infections of whom six have already been placed on quarantine. Thursday marks the 39th consecutive day with local cases reported. Of the 45 new cases, 10 were symptomatic.

The MOH also identified three new clusters, including one linked to 506 Hougang Avenue 8. Three clusters have been subsumed into the Hougang cluster and removed from the MOH's list, bringing the total number of active clusters in Singapore to 44.

Finance Minister Lawrence Wong in a video message posted on Facebook on Thursday called the "hidden" COVID-19 cases in the community very concerning, adding that the recent outbreak at MINDSville@Napiri is a "stark reminder" of this sentiment.

"We are dealing with a very infectious and highly contagious strain of the virus, which is capable of spreading much faster than anything we had to deal with before and causing large clusters to break out easily," the COVID-19 taskforce co-chair added, stressing that Singaporeans need to take relevant precautions and safeguards very seriously.

Ten of the 45 new cases are imported, including four Singaporeans and one permanent resident who returned from India as well as five work permit holders who arrived from Indonesia, Malaysia, and Myanmar, of whom three are foreign domestic workers.

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The sole unlinked community case is a 41-year-old male PR who works as a coating inspector at SBM Keppel Tuas who has received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Separately, one case is a household contact of a previous infection but is not part of any active clusters. She is a 29-year-old Indonesian woman who works as a foreign domestic worker.

The MOH said that the number of new cases in the community has decreased from 152 in the week before to 147 in the past week. The number of unlinked cases in the community has increased from 24 in the week before to 26 in the past week. 

New 506 Hougang Avenue 8 cluster: 1 new case, 13 in total

The MOH said that whole-genome sequencing and phylogenetic analysis conducted by the National Public Health Laboratory have revealed links amongst previous cases to the new 506 Hougang Avenue 8 cluster.

These include cases linked to three clusters, which have been subsumed into the Hougang cluster. They are:

The new case on Thursday linked to the cluster is a 58-year-old Singaporean woman who is a homemaker and a resident at Block 506 Hougang Avenue 8. She has received her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

New 'Case 63964' cluster: 3 new cases, 4 in total

The new cluster is named after the case number of a 61-year-old Singaporean woman who works at Singapore Pools at NTUC FairPrice at Clementi Avenue 3 and was confirmed to have COVID-19 on 1 June. 

The three new additions are family members or household contacts of the woman:

  • a 23-year-old Singaporean woman who is a Singapore University of Social Science student

  • a 30-year-old Indonesian woman who is a foreign domestic worker

  • a 51-year-old Singaporean man who works as a private hire driver for Grab (received first dose of vaccine)

New 'Case 63973' cluster: 2 new cases, 3 in total

The new cluster is named after an 80-year-old Singaporean woman who is a retiree. The fully-vaccinated woman was detected when she was tested for COVID-19 on 1 June as part of testing operations for residents of Yishun Street 72. 

The two new cases identified on Thursday to be linked to this cluster are also residents there. All three cases in this cluster are one another's family members and household contacts: 

  • an 85-year-old Singaporean man who is a retiree (fully vaccinated)

  • a 60-year-old Singaporean woman who is a homemaker (fully vaccinated)

MINDSville@Napiri cluster: 22 formally added, 27 in total

The cluster is first linked to a 37-year-old Singaporean woman who is a resident at the home and was confirmed to have COVID-19 on 31 May.

All 255 staff and residents of MINDSville@Napiri have been tested for COVID-19 since the 37-year-old resident was confirmed.

Of the 22 cases confirmed to be linked to the home on Thursday, 19 are residents while three are nursing aides at the home. They are aged between 32 and 73. 

Of the 19 residents, all are asymptomatic and 17 had already been vaccinated. Of the three staff members, one is asymptomatic while all had already been vaccinated.

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McDonald’s delivery riders cluster: 1 new case, 21 in total

The cluster was first linked to a 27-year-old Malaysian man who works as a delivery rider for IVIC Logistic and McDonald’s (Bedok Reservoir). He was confirmed to have COVID-19 on 20 May. At least four cases in the cluster work at a Pizza Hut outlet at Punggol Plaza.

The latest addition is a 30-year-old Malaysian man who is employed by the same company as a delivery rider at McDonald’s (Tampines Street 32). He has tested preliminarily positive for the B1617 variant and is pending further confirmatory tests.

As he was identified as a household contact of the younger man, he was placed on quarantine on 21 May.

NTUC Foodfare (308 Anchorvale Rd) cluster: 1 new case, 11 in total

It was first linked to a 33-year-old Malaysian man who works as a kitchen assistant at Hua Zai Eating House and was confirmed to have COVID-19 on 29 May.

The latest addition is a 39-year-old female China national who works as a kitchen assistant at Anchorvale Road's NTUC Foodfare. As she is a workplace contact of two previously reported cases, she was placed on quarantine on 31 May. All 26 Hua Zai Eating House outlets will remain closed from 1 to 14 June.

'Case 63887' cluster: 1 new case, 7 in total

The cluster is named after the case number of a 65-year-old Singaporean woman who is a homemaker and was confirmed to have COVID-19 on 30 May.

The latest addition is a three-year-old Singaporean boy who is a student at My First Skool (332B Anchorvale Link). As he is a family member of previously reported cases in the cluster, he was placed on quarantine on 30 May.

'Case 63714' cluster: 1 new case, 5 in total

It is named after the case number of a 74-year-old Singaporean man who is a retiree and was confirmed to have COVID-19 on 24 May.

The latest addition is a 24-year-old Singaporean man who works as an insurance agent at Great Eastern Life and a part-time GrabFood delivery driver. As he had been identified as a household contact of a previously reported case in the cluster, he was placed on quarantine on 24 May.

'Case 63941' cluster, 1 new case, 4 in total

It is named after the case number of a 36-year-old Vietnamese woman who is an unlinked case.

The latest addition is a 17-year-old Malaysian woman who is a student in her home country. She has been in Singapore since September last year to visit her Singaporean family members. As she had been identified as a household contact of previously reported cases in the cluster, she was placed on quarantine on 1 June.

99% of total cases have recovered, 2 in ICU

With 34 more patients discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities on Thursday, 61,557 cases – or 99.1 per cent of the total – have fully recovered from the infection.

Most of the 231 hospitalised cases are stable or improving, while two of them are in critical condition in the intensive care unit.

A total of 324 patients – with mild symptoms or are clinically well but still test positive – are isolated and cared for at community facilities.

Apart from the 33 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.

Among the 205 confirmed cases reported from 28 May to 3 June, 66 cases have tested positive for their serology tests, 106 have tested negative, and 33 serology test results are pending.

In a national televised address on Monday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the government should be able to ease COVID-19 safe management restrictions after 13 June if the pandemic situation continues to improve and the number of community cases falls further.

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