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157 More Cases Discharged 277 New Cases of COVID-19 Infection Confirmed

   As of 24 July 2020, 12pm, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has confirmed and verified an additional 277 cases of COVID-19 infection in Singapore. The breakdown of the cases is as follows:

a)    Imported cases: 2 (2 Dependant’s Pass holders)

Both imported cases are Dependant’s Pass holders who returned to Singapore from India on 12 July. They had been placed on 14-day Stay-Home Notice (SHN) upon arrival in Singapore, and had been tested while serving their SHN.
b)    Cases in the community: 3 [1]  (3 Work Permit holders)

Of the 3 cases in the community, 2 were picked up as a result of our proactive surveillance and screening, and 1 had already been placed on quarantine. 1 case is asymptomatic, and was detected through our proactive testing.
2 of the community cases today are linked to previous cases or clusters. 1 (Case 49453) had been identified as a contact of a previously confirmed case, and was tested when he became symptomatic shortly after being identified as a close contact. The remaining case (Case 49440) was detected as part of our proactive case finding of individuals working at a newly emergent workplace cluster.
1 community case is currently unlinked. Case 49439 was identified from our proactive screening of workers in essential services who are living outside the dormitories, even though he is asymptomatic.
Besides the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, we also conducted serological tests to determine if some of these cases are current or past infections.[2] The serological test results for Cases 49439 and 49440 have come back positive, which indicate likely past infections.

Epidemiological investigations of the unlinked case are in progress. In the meantime, all the identified close contacts have been isolated and placed on quarantine, and will be tested at the start and end of their quarantine period so that we can detect asymptomatic cases. We will also conduct serological tests for his household contacts to determine if he could have been infected by them.
Overall, the number of new cases in the community has decreased, from an average of 11 cases per day in the week before, to an average of 8 per day in the past week. The number of unlinked cases in the community has also decreased, from an average of 6 cases per day in the week before, to an average of 4 per day in the past week. We will continue to closely monitor these numbers, as well as the cases detected through our surveillance programme.
c)    Cases residing in dormitories: 272
We continue to pick up cases amongst Work Permit holders residing in dormitories, including in factory-converted dormitories, because of extensive testing in these premises, as part of our process to verify and test the status of all workers.
2.             Details of these trends can be found in MOH’s daily situation Report ( Please refer to Annex A for the summary of the confirmed cases.

3.             Of the new cases, 99% are linked to known clusters, while the rest are pending contact tracing.

4.             The Inter-Agency Task Force has been systematically and progressively clearing dormitories through aggressive testing of migrant workers residing in dormitories. Cochrane Lodge I (51 Admiralty Road West) has been cleared, and now houses only recovered individuals and those who have recently tested negative for COVID-19 infection. As such, the cluster has now been closed.

Links between previous cases found

5.             In the past week (17 July to 23 July), MOH has uncovered links for 4 previously unlinked cases in the community.

6.             Further epidemiological investigations and contact tracing have uncovered links between previously announced and new cases. Please refer to Annex B and Annex C for details.

Update on condition of confirmed cases

7.             157 more cases of COVID-19 infection have been discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities. In all, 45,172 have fully recovered from the infection and have been discharged from hospitals or community care facilities.

8.             There are currently 157 confirmed cases who are still in hospital. Of these, most are stable or improving, and none is in the intensive care unit. 4,019 are isolated and cared for at community facilities. These are those who have mild symptoms, or are clinically well but still test positive for COVID-19. 27 have passed away from complications due to COVID-19 infection.

24 JULY 2020

[1] Updated from the afternoon press release as two cases have been re-classified following contact tracing.

[2] Cases whose serological tests are positive are likely to have a past infection, and could be shedding minute fragments of the virus RNA picked by the PCR test, which were no longer transmissible and infective to others.

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