SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 596 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday (Apr 19), bringing the total number of infections in the country to 6588.
Twenty-five were Singapore citizens or Permanent Residents, while the vast majority were work permit holders residing in foreign worker dormitories, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said in a press release announcing the preliminary numbers.
READ: ‘I think about my family, not about me’ – A foreign worker stricken with COVID-19 has concerns far away
More details of the cases, and further updates will be shared through its press release later tonight, the ministry said.
In a clarification regarding Saturday’s release, MOH said on its website that the COVID-19 daily update had included cases that were confirmed and verified after 12pm.
These cases had been included in the clusters case listing, the ministry said in a notice on its website.
“We have amended the listing to exclude them from the Annex of the 18 April press release,” the ministry added.
Citing significant public interest, MOH has begun releasing the daily numbers earlier in the day, while sharing details on the cases at night.
CONSTRUCTION SECTOR WORKERS PLACED ON STAY-HOME NOTICE
The Ministry of Manpower announced on Saturday that all work permit holders and S Pass holders in the construction sector would be placed on mandatory stay-home notices.
While the recent rise in number of foreign workers infected with the coronavirus has mostly been concentrated in dormitories, there have been cases at construction worksites, MOM and the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) noted.
“Contact tracing suggests that transmissions at common construction worksites may have contributed to the increase in numbers,” said MOM and BCA.
“Thus far, the cases detected among workers living outside the dormitories have been low. All those infected and their close contacts have been isolated.”
Employers whose workers are affected by the latest stay-home notice are required to make arrangements for them such as providing food, and ensuring that their addresses and mobile phone numbers registered with MOM are up to date.
READ: COVID-19: All work permit and S pass holders in construction sector to be placed on stay-home notice
READ: MOH flags concern over unlinked COVID-19 cases, says tests on patients at primary care facilities indicate ‘undetected cases in community’
Sunday is day 13 of Singapore’s month-long “circuit breaker” – a period with enhanced safe distancing measures in a bid to stem the spread of COVID-19. Most workplaces are closed and schools have transitioned to full home-based learning.
The Prime Minister said there are “a few early signs” that the circuit breaker is bringing down local cases in the broader community.
“But we are still worried about hidden cases circulating in our population, which are keeping the outbreak going,” he added.
“The next few days will be critical. All of us must do our part, in order to defeat COVID-19.”
Published at Sun, 19 Apr 2020 07:40:54 +0000