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775 more cases discharged, 247 new cases of COVID-19 infection confirmed

1. As of 17 June 2020, 12pm, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has confirmed and verified an additional 247 cases of COVID-19 infection in Singapore. The breakdown is as follows:

a) Imported cases: 0

There are no imported cases today.

b) Cases in the community: 5 (2 Singaporeans/Permanent Residents, 3 Work Permit holders)

Of the 5 cases in the community, 2 had been picked up as a result of our proactive surveillance and screening, and the remaining 3 had already been placed on quarantine.

Amongst the 2 Singaporean cases, 1 (Case 41145) is asymptomatic but was tested as his work involves interacting with security guards at dormitories. The other case (Case 41152) is a family member of a previously confirmed case, and had already been quarantined earlier. She had been swabbed during quarantine to verify her status.

Amongst the 3 Work Pass/ Work Permit holders, 2 (Cases 41030 and 41250) had been identified as contacts of previously confirmed cases, and had already been quarantined at government quarantine facilities. They had been swabbed during quarantine to verify their status, even though Case 41030 is asymptomatic. The remaining case also does not have symptoms, but was tested as part of our efforts to screen workers in essential services.

Besides the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, we also conducted serological tests to determine if these cases are current or past infections.1 The serological test result for Case 41030 has come back positive, which indicates likely past infection. The test results for the remaining cases are pending.

Overall, the number of new cases in the community has decreased, from an average of 9 cases per day in the week before, to an average of 7 per day in the past week. The number of unlinked cases in the community has also decreased, from an average of 4 cases per day in the week before, to an average of 3 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: 242

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.

Links between previous cases found

4. In the past week (10 June to 16 June), MOH has uncovered links for 11 previously unlinked cases.

5. 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

6. 775 more cases of COVID-19 infection have been discharged from hospitals or community isolation facilities. In all, 31,938 have fully recovered from the infection and have been discharged from hospitals or community care facilities.

7. There are currently 257 confirmed cases who are still in hospital. Of these, most are stable or improving, and 2 are in critical condition in the intensive care unit. 8,995 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. 26 have passed away from complications due to COVID-19 infection.

COVID-19 Test for Persons under Stay-Home Notice

8. The Multi-Ministry Taskforce announced on 15 June 2020 that all inbound and outbound travellers who enter Singapore from 17 June 2020, 2359 hours, and leave Singapore from 17 June, 2359 hours, respectively will be required to pay for their COVID-19 tests, where applicable. In addition, incoming travellers who are not Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, who enter Singapore from 17 June 2020, 2359 hours, will be required to pay for their stay at dedicated Stay-Home Notice (SHN) facilities, where applicable.

9. We recognise that there may be Singapore citizens and Permanent Residents who had left Singapore before the prevailing travel advisory was issued on 27 March 2020, and who may be returning in the near future.  For such cases, we will allow a grace period, and if they return and enter Singapore by 31 August 2020, we will waive the cost of the COVID-19 tests.  

10. We will not automatically swab all persons who are aged 12 or younger before the end of their SHN, as we recognise that the tests could pose difficulties for young children. However, if any of their close contacts are found to be positive, we will initiate the swab tests for them. 

11. For avoidance of doubt, all travellers, including Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents, who last left Singapore from 27 March 2020 despite the prevailing travel advisory, will have to continue to bear the costs of their stay at dedicated SHN facilities where applicable, as well as the cost of their COVID-19 tests.

[1] 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.

17 JUNE 2020

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