Coronavirus: RWS casino employee among two new cases in Singapore

One of the new patients works at the Resorts World Sentosa Casino.
One of the new patients works at the Resorts World Sentosa Casino.ST PHOTO: JASON QUAH

Two more coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said yesterday, bringing the number discovered with the illness here to 47.

One of the two new cases is a 39-year-old Bangladeshi worker who had worked at the same location as another Bangladesh national who was found to have the virus. Both did not stay at the same premises.

The other is a 35-year-old Singapore permanent resident living in Johor Baru, who works at the Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) casino.

Neither had recently been to China, where the virus originated in Wuhan.

The RWS casino worker reported symptoms on Feb 5, and went to a general practitioner (GP) clinic on Sunday. He was transferred to Tan Tock Seng Hospital and isolated.

He is now in an isolation room at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID).

RWS said it has identified employees who have interacted with the staff member recently and instructed them to go on a 14-day leave of absence. It added that deep cleaning, thorough disinfection and sanitisation have been carried out in all areas the employee had come into contact with.

One previous confirmed case, a 54-year-old Singaporean man who was identified as the 43rd patient here on Sunday, also worked at RWS, but no link has been drawn between the two cases.

The Bangladeshi, a Singapore work permit holder, reported symptoms on Feb 6, went to see a GP the next day, and to NCID on Monday.

Before being admitted to hospital, he had stayed in his rental apartment in Veerasamy Road. He had worked in the same location as a 39-year-old Bangladeshi national, an earlier confirmed case, who had visited Mustafa Centre in Little India before being hospitalised, and who stayed at The Leo dormitory in Kaki Bukit.

Meanwhile, two more patients have been discharged from hospital, bringing the total number of those who have recovered to nine.

Seven of the 38 patients still in hospital remain in critical condition and in the intensive care unit, said the ministry.

It said that it had identified 1,124 close contacts as of noon yesterday. Of the 1,021 who are still in Singapore, 989 have been contacted and are being quarantined or isolated. Efforts are ongoing to get in touch with the remaining 32 close contacts.

It also noted that it has now uncovered links between 15 cases and the three currently known clusters. Contact tracing is under way for the other 10 locally transmitted cases to establish if they are linked to previous cases or persons with travel history to China.

Three Singaporeans have been linked to The Life Church and Missions in Paya Lebar.

Another nine people are understood to have come into contact with infected patients at health products store Yong Thai Hang in Cavan Road, which a tour group from Guangxi, China visited on Jan 23.

Another cluster includes three Singapore residents who attended an international business conference at Grand Hyatt Singapore from Jan 20 to 22.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 12, 2020, with the headline 'RWS casino employee among two new cases in Singapore'. Print Edition | Subscribe