Singapore Now Has 40 Confirmed Cases Of Coronavirus
The numbers continue to climb. As of 8 Feb, Singapore now has 40 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, after the Ministry of Health (MOH) reported 7 new ones.
Among them, 5 have links to previous cases, while 2 don’t.
MOH has even highlighted a possible new cluster in Paya Lebar.
2 patients with no links to previous coronavirus cases in Singapore
One of the 2 untraceable cases is a 64-year-old male Singaporean with no recent travel history to China.
The taxi driver noticed initial symptoms on 30 Jan and visited Bukit Merah Polyclinic the next day.
At that time, he had stopped driving his taxi and mostly stayed at his Henderson Crescent home, except to go to Redhill Market and a Bukit Merah hawker centre for food.
He was only taken to Singapore General Hospital (SGH) on 6 Feb, according to MOH. His test results came out positive for the 2019-nCoV the next afternoon.
The second patient is a 53-year-old male Singaporean who stays at Jurong East Street 32 and works as a private hire car driver.
He also hadn’t travelled to China, but reported symptoms on 30 Jan too. He went to a General Practitioner (GP) on 2 occasions — 1 and 3 Feb, before transferring to Ng Teng Fong Hospital on 6 Feb.
Doctors confirmed he had the coronavirus on 7 Feb, after which they conveyed him to National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID), where he is currently in isolation.
Coincidentally, Grab announced a temporary suspension of all GrabShare services starting from 1am on Sunday (9 Feb).
Those intending to use or provide these services, please take note.
5 cases linked to Yong Thai Hang, Grand Hyatt & Paya Lebar church
The 5 other cases have links to previous cases at Yong Thai Hang store at Cavan Road, the conference at Grand Hyatt, and The Life Church and Missions Singapore at Paya Lebar.
2 of them were workers at Yong Thai Hang who had spotted symptoms near the end of Jan and were placed under quarantine after contact tracing on 4 Feb.
The last one had been at The Life Church and Missions Singapore, a site 4 previous patients had also visited.
Because of these 5 cases arising from the same place, MOH has identified it as a possible cluster.
MOH has also detailed the various places these patients have visited, which you can read more about in their press release here.
Singapore to switch approach if numbers keep growing
Earlier in his address to the nation, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said they will have to reconsider their strategy in countering the coronavirus outbreak if the numbers keep growing.
If the virus is widespread, it is futile to trace every contact. If we still hospitalise and isolate every suspect case, our hospitals will be overwhelmed.
PM Lee said at that point, Singapore must shift their approach, provided that mortality rates stay low like flu.
Those who only have mild symptoms to see their family GP, and rest at home instead of going to the hospital.
…let hospitals and healthcare workers focus on the most vulnerable patients — the elderly, young children, and those with medical complications.
However, we are not at the point yet, as PM Lee said they’re just thinking ahead and anticipating the next few steps. You can watch the full video here.
2nd flight from Wuhan to Singapore touches down 9 Feb morning
Meanwhile, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) confirmed that help is on the way to bring home some 140 Singaporeans stranded in Wuhan.
According to CNA late Saturday (8 Feb), the highly anticipated second flight will be flying Singaporeans and their family members back from the Chinese city in Hubei province.
Scoot flight TR5120 has left Singapore on 8 Feb afternoon, and is expected to touch down on Sunday (9 Feb) morning.
Here’s a breakdown of coronavirus cases around the world.
Stay tuned for further updates.
Featured image courtesy of AFP.