Singapore—New community cases and the first Covid-19 infection cluster in months may signal the need for additional measures to curb the spread of infections, said Minister Lawrence Wong.
Mr Wong, co-chair of the multi-ministry task force assigned to tackle the pandemic, said this in a Facebook post on Monday night (Jan 18).
He noted that more new cases have been reported in Singapore recently, as well as a local cluster linked to a police para-vet.
“Unfortunately there were also several recent cases who did not seek medical treatment despite falling ill with flu-like symptoms,” added Mr Wong.
He assured the public that contact tracers are hard at work to find all the people who have tested positive who they have been in contact with so that the infections do not spread any further.
The minister went on to say that more measures to curb the spread of the infections may be needed, although he did not specify what these measures are quite yet.
“We are also monitoring the situation carefully and considering if additional measures are necessary to ensure the infection remains under control.”
Mr Wong appealed to the public to exercise vigilance and discipline and to follow safety protocols, as well as to consult with a medical professional if they show any symptoms of the infection.
“Do your part to reduce transmission risks,” he wrote.
“The virus is still circulating silently within our community and we cannot afford to let our guard down.”
In its most recent Covid-19 update on Monday (Jan 18), the Ministry of Health (MOH) wrote,
“As of 18 January 2021, 12pm, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has confirmed and verified that there are 2 new cases of locally transmitted COVID-19 infection. The cases are in the community, and there are no new cases in the dormitories.
There are 12 imported cases, who had already been placed on Stay-Home Notice (SHN) or isolated upon arrival in Singapore. Amongst the new cases today, 9 are asymptomatic, and were detected from our proactive screening and surveillance, while 5 were symptomatic.”
The two new community cases are linked to the police para-vet cluster Mr Wong mentioned in his post, according to the straitstimes.com.
This cluster involves a Singaporean working in the K-9 Unit at 2 Mowbray Road.
So far, there are six cases linked to this cluster, four of whom neglected to seek medical attention even when they were symptomatic for the infection.
One of the two new community cases is the wife of a man who had tested positive. On Jan 12, she had diarrhea, a sore throat and experienced a loss of her sense of taste, in addition to a cold that had started two days before. She did not, however, go to a doctor.
The MOH reached out to her on Jan 16 as part of its endeavours to contact trace potentially infected persons, and she tested positive for Covid-19 the following day, and was warded at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
She and the other new community case, an older Malaysian woman in the country on a long-term visit pass, are family members of a Singaporean administrative officer, who works in the same place as the infected para-vet.
The Malaysian woman also developed Covid-19 symptoms earlier in the month, but did not see a doctor.
When MOH reached out through contact tracing and she tested positive for the infection on Jan 17, she was warded at Tan Tock Seng Hospital.
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