COVID-19: Record 142 new cases in Singapore with over 98% local transmissions; total 1623
SINGAPORE — The Ministry of Health (MOH) confirmed on Wednesday (8 April) 142 more coronavirus cases here, of which over 98 per cent are local transmissions, bringing the country’s total to 1,623.
This comes a day after the city-state reported a three-digit increase in cases for the second time, following its first of 120 new patients on Sunday.Of the new cases, two are imported – bringing the total of imported cases to 559 – while the rest, over 98 per cent, are local transmissions.
A total of 72 locally-transmitted cases currently have no established links, including a 32-year-old male Indian national, identified as case 1604, who died while awaiting test results for the virus.The long-term pass holder had been swabbed at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) for the virus on Tuesday and was advised to stay at home, pending his test results, but had died at his residence the next day.
He was confirmed to have the virus after his death, said the MOH. His chest X-ray indicated he did not have pneumonia and investigations are ongoing to establish the cause of death.Among the cases with links, 40 were linked to clusters at foreign worker dormitories, while 28 were linked to non-dormitory clusters or other cases.
Cases from public healthcare sectorCase 14666. Case 1466 is a 31 year-old male Indian national who is a Singapore Work Pass holder, and has no recent travel history to affected countries or regions. He reported onset of symptoms on 5 April, and subsequent test results confirmed COVID-19 infection on 7 April. He is currently warded in an isolation room at NCID.
7. He is employed as a technician at Ng Teng Fong General Hospital but had not gone to work since onset of symptoms.33 more patients discharged, 29 in ICUThe ministry also announced that 29 more patients have been discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities on Wednesday. This means a total of 406 cases have fully recovered from the infection and have been discharged.
Most of the 669 remaining hospitalised cases are stable or improving, while 29 are in critical condition in the intensive care unit.A total of 542 cases – clinically well but still test positive for the virus – are isolated and cared for at Concord International Hospital, Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Gleneagles Hospital, Mount Alvernia Hospital and the Community Isolation Facility at D’Resort NTUC.
Six here have died from complications due to the virus with the latest fatality – an 88-year-old male permanent resident – succumbing to it early Saturday morning.As of Wednesday noon, the MOH has identified 19,444 close contacts who have been quarantined. Of these, 5,665 are currently quarantined, and 13,779 have completed their quarantine.
According to the ministry’s latest daily situational report, 62,500 stay-home notices have been issued to date, with 21,100 people currently serving them.Measures to combat spread of coronavirusOn Tuesday, the government passed the COVID-19 temporary measures Bill in Parliament, giving it the legal basis to enforce the enhanced safe distancing measures that began on the same day and will last till 4 May.
Part of these “circuit breaker” measures – announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong last Friday – include the closure of schools and most workplaces. Lee also said that Singapore will no longer discourage the public from wearing face masks.
Only essential services like food establishments, markets and supermarkets, transport, and key banking services will remain open during the month-long closure.On Sunday, the MOH gazetted two of the dorms, S11 and Westlite, as social isolation areas with almost 20,000 workers under quarantine. A third, Toh Guan Dormitory, was declared an isolation area the next day.
At the virtual media conference held by the COVID-19 multi-ministry taskforce, Health Minister and taskforce co-chair Gan Kim Yong also said the government is looking at preparing the Expo as a possible site for a community care facility to house patients who have recovered but are still infectious.
Separately, all Singapore residents and long-term pass holders returning from overseas apart from Hubei province must serve the 14-day stay-home notice, while those returning from Hubei must serve a 14-day quarantine. All short-term visitors are barred from entering or transiting via Singapore.
Story continuesAnyone who flouts the 14-day stay-home notice by leaving the place of accommodation or residence they are serving the notice in will be subjected to steep penalties.Patients who flout their five-day medical leave can face steep penalties such as a fine of up to $10,000 or a maximum jail term of six months, or both, according to the MOH’s latest updates to the Infectious Diseases Act.
The same penalties also apply to those who intentionally sit on a seat or stand in a queue less than one metre away from another person in public venues, from now till end-April.Those on five-day sick leave or serving a stay-home notice must also wear a mask if they have to leave their place of accommodation to seek emergency medical treatment.
On Monday, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat announced an additional $5.1 billion Solidarity Budget to help businesses and households.The government’s response to COVID-19 will total $59.9 billion, or about 12 per cent of Singapore’s gross domestic product.
Over 1.4m cases globallyTo date, there are over 1.4 million COVID-19 cases globally. Over 83,000 have died from the virus, with Italy and Spain accounting for close to 40 per cent of the total.At over 400,000 cases, the US now holds the record of having the largest number of patients globally, followed by Spain at over 146,000 cases, Italy at over 135,000, France at over 109,000, and Germany at over 107,000.
China, where the virus originated, has close to 82,000 cases and on Tuesday reported no new coronavirus deaths for the first time since it started publishing figures in January.Stay in the know on-the-go: Join Yahoo Singapore's Telegram channel at http://t.me/YahooSingapore
Related stories:COVID-19: Singapore will do its part as global citizen – PM LeeCOVID-19: 'Very small number' taking advantage of Temporary Relief FundCOVID-19: Temporary Bill passed to allow government to enforce enhanced safe distancing measures
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