17 new Covid-19 cases in S'pore, eight are linked to TTSH cluster

An employee is seen disinfecting seats in the Endoscopy Centre of Tan Tock Seng Hospital on Apr 29, 2021. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

SINGAPORE - There were 17 new coronavirus cases confirmed by the Ministry of Health (MOH) as at Monday noon (May 3), taking Singapore's total to 61,235.

Of these, 10 are from the community and none from foreign workers' dormitories.

Eight of the patients from the community have been linked to the nurse at Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) and were detected from the testing of patients and staff at the hospital.

In total, there are 35 cases linked to the TTSH cluster so far. It is the largest of nine active clusters in Singapore.

The remaining two community cases are close contacts of previous cases who had already been placed under quarantine, MOH said.

There were also seven imported cases who had been placed on stay-home notices on arrival in Singapore.

More details will be announced on Monday night.

On Sunday (May 2), additions to the TTSH cluster included five patients who had already been discharged and sent home, but were later found to have the virus.

They had been placed under quarantine and tested as part of aggressive efforts to ringfence the hospital outbreak.

To this end, TTSH has completed the swabbing of all inpatients in its main wards last Friday (April 30) and the results are all negative, the Health Ministry said on Sunday night.

The hospital will also be testing all 12,000 staff on campus. To date, it has already swabbed 7,000 staff and priority will be to swab staff working in clinical areas over the next few days.

All patients will continue to be monitored closely for their health and well being.

Of the 14 community cases reported on Sunday, 11 of the patients have been linked to TTSH.

One is linked to the cluster at a community care facility in Tuas, and another to the cluster that started with an Immigrations and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officer who was deployed at Changi Airport Terminal 1. The last case - a 37-year-old maid from India - is unlinked.

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Of the 11 cases added to the TTSH cluster on Sunday, seven are patients aged between 60 and 98. One is a physiotherapist and three are people who visited Ward 9D, where many of the infections happened.

Globally, the virus outbreak, which began in December 2019, has infected more than 151 million people. More than 3.1 million people have died.

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