We thank Mr Stephen Tan for his letter, “Could public have been told earlier about Bugis Junction cluster?” (Aug 27).
The Bugis Junction cluster was announced on Aug 24, the same day that our epidemiological investigations found that 20 cases of COVID-19 infection were linked to Bugis Junction.
There had been no delay in announcing the cluster.
At the time of announcement, the cluster comprised these 20 cases.
When this new cluster was detected, all staff working in affected shops at Bugis Junction were tested for COVID-19, and close contacts of confirmed cases were quarantined once identified.
Community surveillance testing was also implemented the next day to detect and ring-fence possible emerging transmissions arising from this cluster.
Members of the public who visited Bugis Junction between Aug 17 and Aug 24 were encouraged to go for free COVID-19 testing and advised to monitor their health closely.
The Ministry of Health took these public health actions at the earliest opportunity so as to reduce further transmission of the virus.
Vernon Lee (Professor)
Communicable Diseases Division
Ministry of Health