Para-veterinarian at Police K-9 Unit is sole Covid-19 community case in Singapore

Singapore is keeping its population safe at the same time as keeping workers safe, said PM Lee.
Singapore is keeping its population safe at the same time as keeping workers safe, said PM Lee.ST PHOTO: GIN TAY

SINGAPORE - A 32-year-old Singaporean who works as a para-veterinarian at the Singapore Police Force's K-9 Unit is the lone locally transmitted coronavirus case reported on Thursday (Jan 14), said the Ministry of Health (MOH).

The patient, whose job involves tele-consultations with dog handlers, developed a fever on Monday. He sought treatment at a general practitioner clinic the same day, where he was tested for Covid-19 as part of enhanced community testing.

The man had remained at home on medical leave until his result came back positive on Wednesday, and he was conveyed in an ambulance to the National Centre for Infectious Diseases.

His case is currently unlinked, said MOH, which added that all his close contacts, including family members and co-workers, have been isolated and placed on quarantine. They will be tested at the start and end of their quarantine period so that asymptomatic cases can be detected.

The health ministry also announced on Thursday that there were 44 imported cases, bringing Singapore's total to 59,029.

This is the highest number of imported cases since March 23 when there were 48 imported cases.

Among Thursday's cases were two short-term visit pass holders who arrived from Brazil to participate in an e-sports event.

There were also 29 work permit holders who arrived from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Myanmar and the Philippines.

Of this group, 14 are foreign domestic workers, and one is a sailor who worked on board bunker tanker NewOcean 6.

The 39-year-old Indonesian man was newly added to the NewOcean 6 cluster, which now has a total of 13 confirmed cases.

He was was identified as a close contact of a previously confirmed case and was placed on quarantine on Dec 31. He was tested during quarantine and confirmed positive on Wednesday.

The imported cases also included three Singaporeans who returned from Qatar, the Philippines and the United Kingdom.

MOH added Jem, Chong Pang City Wet Market & Food Centre, Junction Nine and Sembawang Cottage to the list of places visited by Covid-19 patients while they were still infectious.

These visits occurred between Jan 9 and Jan 10.

Overall, there were three new cases in the community in the last seven days, and nine the week before. There was also one unlinked case in the community in the last seven days, compared with six the week before.

With 35 cases discharged on Thursday, 58,742 patients have fully recovered from the disease.

A total of 41 patients remain in hospital and none are in the intensive care unit.

Singapore has had 29 deaths from Covid-19 complications, while 15 who tested positive have died of other causes.

Globally, the virus outbreak, which began in December 2019, has infected more than 91.6 million people. More than 1.96 million people have died.