Zika outbreak

Number of new Zika cases continues to drop

Two people have come down with the Zika virus in the Elite Terrace area in Siglap. One of them was a new case from yesterday, while another had been picked up earlier on.
Two people have come down with the Zika virus in the Elite Terrace area in Siglap. One of them was a new case from yesterday, while another had been picked up earlier on.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

But potential new cluster in Siglap; eight new Zika cases bring total figure to 283

The number of new Zika cases continues to fall, with eight fresh ones reported as of noon yesterday, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) in its daily update last night.

But it detected a potential new cluster in the Elite Terrace area in Siglap, where two people have come down with the mosquito- borne virus. One of them was a new case from yesterday, while another had been picked up earlier on.

In addition to the new case in Elite Terrace, two of yesterday's cases were linked to the large Aljunied Crescent/Sims Drive/Kallang Way/Paya Lebar Way cluster.

One more was linked to the Bishan Street 12 cluster that was detected on Tuesday, while the other four have no known links to any existing cluster.

Yesterday's update brings the total number of confirmed Zika cases in Singapore to 283 since the first locally transmitted case was diagnosed two Saturdays ago.

Siglap resident Edward Poa, 27, who lives near the new cluster in Elite Terrace, said his family has stocked up on insect repellent since the start of the Zika outbreak - although it is mainly for his infant niece's use.

 
 

"But now that (this is) a cluster, I guess we have to be more vigilant," said the investment analyst.

"I'm not too worried since the effects are not that serious, but of course we will do our best to avoid catching the virus."

Undergraduate Timothy Goh, 22, who has been living in the area for 12 years, said that his family deals with the many insects around his home by putting up mosquito screens.

"I do feel worried (about the news), but I won't change my behaviour. I still go cycling and running without repellent... you can't change your whole life and live in fear."

In yesterday's joint statement with the MOH, the National Environment Agency (NEA) said that mosquito-control operations at the four previously identified clusters will continue.

These are in the Aljunied area, Bedok North Avenue, Joo Seng Road and Bishan Street 12.

The National Environment Agency added that it will also start mosquito-control and outreach efforts in Elite Terrace.

NEA officers were seen putting oil into drains and fogging at blocks of flats in Bishan Street 12 yesterday morning.

While residents were aware that their area had become a Zika cluster, many remained not too concerned.

Madam Goh Beng Choo, 64, a retiree, said: "Such a virus infection is going to be worldwide - people travel a lot and it's not going to be localised."

•Additional reporting by Nadia Chevroulet

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 08, 2016, with the headline 'Number of new cases continues to drop'. Print Edition | Subscribe