SGH hepatitis C cluster Nov 2 update: 735 patients screened, appointments made for 192 to be tested

735 patients have been screened, with 597 testing negative, three positive and 135 pending results.
735 patients have been screened, with 597 testing negative, three positive and 135 pending results.ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG

SINGAPORE - Singapore General Hospital has screened 735 patients for hepatitis C, it said in an update on Monday (Nov 2).

These patients had stayed in Wards 64A and 67, which were affected by the outbreak, from January to September.

Of the735 patients screened as of Monday 1pm, 597 had tested negative and three positive as announced earlier. Pending still, are 135 test results, the hospital said.

Appointments have been made for another 192 patients for screening, the hospital said.

"The number of staff screened remains at 312 and all the results were negative," it added.

The hospital had originally decided to screen those who stayed in the wards between January and June.

But on Oct 28, an independent committee looking into the outbreak had recommended that screening be extended to patients who stayed in the two wards between July and September.

This was to verify if precautionary measures put in place in the wake of the outbreak have been effective, the committee said.

About 350 more patients are expected to be tested in this second round.

SGH announced on Oct 6 that 22 kidney patients had contracted hepatitis C while receiving treatment in the hospital.

Eight patients have died, with five of the deaths possibly linked to the infection.

Those who think they might be affected should call 6321-3356, leave a message via SMS to 8799-2736, or e-mail check@sgh.com.sg. They should provide their name and NRIC number.