Radiographer at S'pore Expo facility among new Covid-19 cases; 4 cases there currently unlinked

Personnel walking inside Singapore Expo on April 30, 2020. ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

SINGAPORE - A fourth person working at the Singapore Expo community care facility has contracted the coronavirus, as the Ministry of Health (MOH) reported 741 new Covid-19 cases on Thursday (May 7).

The 43-year-old Singapore citizen is a radiographer who had gone to work at Singapore Expo before he was confirmed to have the infection on Thursday. He is now warded at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases.

A spokesman for Woodlands Health Campus, whose staff are among those caring for patients at Singapore Expo, said on Thursday that the earlier three cases there are currently unlinked. Further epidemiological investigations and contact tracing are ongoing.

"Additional measures have been implemented to ensure the continued safety of everyone such as strict segregation of teams to specific work and rest areas. Refresher briefings on good hygiene, social distancing and PPE practices will also be conducted," he told The Straits Times.

"We have also deployed social distancing ambassadors and put up posters to remind everyone to adhere to the safety measures, including at the rest areas. We will be installing clear screen dividers on dining tables as an additional protection."

The total number of cases in Singapore now stands at 20,939, and it is the 14th day in a row where the new daily infections fell below 1,000.

Five Singaporeans and permanent residents are among the new patients. Migrant workers living in dormitories continue to form the bulk of the remaining cases.

Two quarantine order officers who served orders at various dormitories are among the new cases as well.

Six new clusters were identified on Thursday. One of them is the industrial area of 4 Sungei Kadut Avenue, which is linked to 42 earlier confirmed cases. Another, at 5 Tech Park Crescent, is linked to 38 cases while a factory site at Sixth Lok Yang Road has eight infections.

Meanwhile, 31 newly confirmed cases are linked to 98 Kaki Bukit Industrial Terrace, forming a new cluster there. One newly confirmed case is also found to be linked to 14 previous cases to form a new cluster at 3 Tuas Drive 1. Six new cases are linked to a new cluster at 52 Tuas View Square.

Of the new cases announced on Thursday, 725 are foreign workers living in dormitories.

A total of 18,483 of 323,000 migrant workers living in dormitories have tested positive of Covid-19.

MOH said that it picked up more cases in dormitories because of extensive testing. The ministry added that the number of new cases in the community has decreased to an average of 10 a day in the past week from an average of 14 cases a day two weeks ago.

The number of unlinked cases in the community has also fallen to an average of four a day in the past week from an average of seven cases a day two weeks ago.

As of Thursday, 1,712 patients in Singapore have fully recovered from the virus and been discharged. Twenty people have died of the infection.

Globally, the outbreak, which began in December last year, has infected about 3.82 million people. Some 264,000 have died.

The United States is the worst affected country in the world with more than 1.26 million cases and 74,000 deaths from Covid-19 as of Thursday.


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