Coronavirus pandemic

52 new cases in S'pore, including National Skin Centre consultant

Travellers at Changi Airport Terminal 2 on March 24, 2020. Of the 52 new Covid-19 cases announced by the Ministry of Health on March 26, 28 were imported.
Travellers at Changi Airport Terminal 2 on March 24, 2020. Of the 52 new Covid-19 cases announced by the Ministry of Health on March 26, 28 were imported.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

Singapore announced 52 new coronavirus cases yesterday, with 28 of the new patients contracting the virus overseas.

All except two of the 28 were returning residents or long-term pass holders who had travelled to Europe, North America, the Middle East or other parts of Asia.

The remaining 24 cases were locally transmitted, and 10 were linked to existing clusters or previous cases. Of these, two were linked to the new cluster at the PCF Sparkletots pre-school in Fengshan, and one was linked to the new cluster at Dover Court International School.

There are now 20 cases linked to the Fengshan pre-school cluster, 15 of whom are staff there. The remaining five are family members of the school's principal.

All four cases in the international school cluster are staff.

Contact tracing is ongoing for the 14 unlinked cases, said the Ministry of Health (MOH). One of the unlinked cases is a 32-year-old woman with no travel history to affected countries. She is an associate consultant at the National Skin Centre and was working before the onset of symptoms on Tuesday.

A total of 172 patients have recovered and been discharged so far. However, of the 422 still in hospital, 18 are in critical care. Two patients had died on Saturday from complications due to the Covid-19 infection.

Patients who are clinically well but still test positive for Covid-19 were moved to Concord International Hospital, Mount Elizabeth Hospital, and the community isolation facility at D'Resort NTUC.

MOH said 3,216 close contacts are currently in quarantine, and 6,555 close contacts have completed their quarantine.

Numbers are expected to rise as some of the 200,000 overseas Singaporeans return home, Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said in Parliament on Wednesday.

Singapore has announced increasingly strict measures to fight the spread of the virus, including limiting all gatherings outside of work or school to 10 people or fewer, and imposing penalties on those with acute respiratory symptoms who leave their homes while on their five-day sick leave.

Starting from 11.59pm yesterday, all entertainment venues such as bars, cinemas and karaoke outlets will be closed until April 30.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 27, 2020, with the headline '52 new cases in S'pore, including National Skin Centre consultant'. Print Edition | Subscribe