COVID-19: Singapore sees highest surge of infection in month

Published on : Friday, April 30, 2021

Singapore has recorded 16 new locally-transmitted coronavirus cases, the first double-digit daily jump in months.

The health ministry said seven of these infections were family members of an earlier case involving a 38-year-old Singaporean who works as an immigration officer.

Eight cases were linked to an emerging cluster at the Tan Tock Seng Hospital, where a nurse tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday.

The authorities said the affected ward had been locked down and that patients there were being swabbed and isolated. The staff at the hospital will also be tested, the health ministry said, adding that visitors will not be allowed into the wards.

Thursday’s spike adds to a recent surge in community cases in the city state, which had the virus largely under control in the past months. Singapore has logged 46 local infections so far in April, compared to just nine for the whole of March

Health Minister Gan Kim Yong, the co-chair of the republic’s virus task force, last week said Singapore was on “heightened alert”.

Based on the health ministry’s preliminary findings on Thursday, only one case is unlinked, which meant that the figures would likely not affect the quarantine-free travel bubble that Singapore is readying with Hong Kong.

Under the announced rules, the scheme would be suspended if the seven-day moving average of unlinked infections in either city is more than five, among other mechanisms.

The Philippines is extending an already month-long lockdown by two weeks as the country’s worst coronavirus infection spike since the start of the pandemic starts to ease but remains alarming.

President Rodrigo Duterte said in televised remarks on Wednesday night that the second-most restrictive lockdown level will now run through May 14 in Metropolitan Manila and four nearby provinces, a region of more than 25 million people.

Mayors, however, cut a nine-hour night curfew in Metropolitan Manila to six hours to help battered businesses.


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