2,994 new Covid-19 cases in S’pore, figure set to pass 10k after long weekend

The lower number of cases, which is atypical of a Tuesday, could be due to Deepavali on Monday. ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

SINGAPORE – There were 2,994 new Covid-19 infections on Tuesday, the lowest figure on a Tuesday in October.

The lower number of cases, which is atypical of a Tuesday, could be due to Deepavali on Monday, as people put off going to the doctor until after the long weekend, said infectious diseases experts.

Professor Paul Tambyah, president of the Asia Pacific Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infection, expects Wednesday’s case figure to be in the 11,000 to 12,000 range, similar to the last two Tuesdays.

“Wednesday’s figure may be a little higher because of the spillover from the long weekend,” said Prof Tambyah, noting that figures also spiked on July 12 after the Hari Raya Haji long weekend.

Case numbers on Tuesdays typically tend to be higher compared with the rest of the week as they reflect the spike in infections after the weekend, when more people are out in various social settings.

Last Tuesday, Singapore recorded 11,934 new Covid-19 infections, more than double the 5,196 new cases the day before.

Associate Professor Alex Cook from the National University of Singapore’s Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health said: “If the Monday is a public holiday, we would expect a Monday-like number of cases on Tuesday and a Tuesday-like number of cases on Wednesday.”

“That’s why we should be a bit cautious in interpreting the daily cases this week, and the weekly growth rates this week and next,” he added.

On Oct 23, Health Minister Ong Ye Kung said that the ongoing wave of Covid-19 infections driven by the XBB sub-variant may peak earlier than mid-November, as previously expected.

The XBB Omicron sub-variant, otherwise known as BA.2.10, is currently the dominant cause of Covid-19 infections in Singapore, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Oct 15.

MOH has urged seniors and immuno-compromised people to continue wearing masks in crowded indoor settings.

Members of the public should also not go to hospital emergency departments, unless they have serious conditions.

Of the new local Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, 2,558 were detected through antigen rapid tests (ART). Another 262 were detected through polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests.

There were 174 new imported cases, with four detected through PCR tests and 170 through ART.

There were nine intensive care unit cases and 43 who needed oxygen supplementation. There were also three deaths reported.

Singapore has recorded a total of 2,070,784 Covid-19 cases and 1,666 deaths.

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