2 new Covid-19 cases in Singapore, including assistant cook at pre-school in International Business Park

One of the two new cases is warded at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases, while the other new case is warded at the National University Hospital. ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG, LIM YAOHUI

SINGAPORE - Two new cases of the coronavirus (Covid-19) disease were confirmed by the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Wednesday (March 4), including a 62-year-old Singaporean woman who works at Creative O Preschoolers' Bay at International Business Park in Jurong.

Meanwhile, one other patient has recovered and was discharged.

This brings the total number of cases here to 112, of which 79 have fully recovered.

Both of the new cases have no recent travel history to affected regions outside Singapore.

The 62-year-old woman, an assistant cook at the pre-school, was confirmed to have the virus on Wednesday morning. She is Case 112.

The Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) said she became unwell on Feb 21, a few hours into her shift.

She went to see a doctor promptly and was placed on medical leave. She has not been back to the pre-school since then.

She is currently warded at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases.

The woman is linked to Case 94, a 64-year-old Singaporean woman who is a family member of the infected 12-year-old Raffles Institution student.

The Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) has ordered the temporary closure of the pre-school on Thursday and Friday, the MSF said.

The ministry added that this will cover the 14-day incubation period as the patient was last at the pre-school on Feb 21.

All staff, including teachers, will be given a leave of absence during this period and the pre-school will reopen on Monday, March 9.

The pre-school will also conduct a thorough cleaning and disinfection of its premises and is closely monitoring its staff, as well as the children and their parents, the ministry said.

Earlier precautionary measures had been implemented according to MOH and ECDA guidelines.

The MSF said these include health checks, restrictions on visitors and suspension of large group and communal activities as well as excursions and field trips. Temperature screening for all children and staff has also been stepped up.

"ECDA is working with the pre-school to engage parents on the precautionary measures," said the MSF.

"In accordance with MOH's guidelines, affected children are advised to stay at home during the closure period. The affected children should avoid going to crowded places and attending social gatherings."

The other confirmed case is a 43-year-old Singapore permanent resident who had gone to Malaysia from Feb 18 to 21. He is Case 111.

He lives in Compassvale Street.

He reported the onset of symptoms on Feb 24 and went to see a general practitioner (GP) that day.

He also went to Sengkang General Hospital on Feb 27. The next day, he saw the GP again.

On Tuesday, he went to the National University Hospital, where he was warded in an isolation room. He tested positive for the coronavirus that afternoon.

The ministry said contact tracing is being done to establish if he has any links to previous cases.

The patient who was discharged, Case 61, is a 57-year-old Singaporean man linked to the Grace Assembly of God cluster.

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