With the resumption of economic and social activities, community cases of COVID-19 in Singapore have increased.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) has stepped up proactive measures to detect and isolate linked cases quickly, as well as uncover unlinked cases through active surveillance and aggressive testing.
Here is an overview of the situation.
Decline in total daily cases
Since the Circuit Breaker period in April and May 2020, the number of total daily new cases has been declining.
Migrant worker dormitory cases continue to decrease. Efforts to systematically test and clear migrant workers and dormitories will continue.
Some imported cases
20 imported cases were detected over the past week, mostly comprising returning Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents. A few are Work Pass or Dependant’s Pass Holders who have been approved to return to Singapore.
To prevent community transmission from imported cases, travellers are isolated under Stay-Home Notices upon arrival to Singapore. They are also tested if they become unwell or before they end their Stay-Home Notice.
Increase in community cases, over half are linked
Over the past week, an average of 12 community cases are detected a day, an increase from around 8 community cases a day in the prior week.
Linked community cases
Over half of these community cases (57%) since the start of Phase One are linked. These are detected through active case finding efforts, aggressive ring-fencing efforts around confirmed cases, and intensive contact tracing efforts to quarantine close contacts quickly.
The most common mode of transmission amongst linked cases are households. Some transmissions occur in workplaces, especially those at frontline COVID-19 operations.
Due to the tight restrictions imposed, fewer transmissions take place through social gatherings. However, continued vigilance is necessary as more social activities resume in Phase Two.
Unlinked community cases
Regular testing has also picked up unlinked community cases. About 6 in 10 were asymptomatic, or displaying no symptoms, and almost half are likely to be past infections who tested positive under serology tests.
Half of unlinked cases have been from the construction sector and occupations, such as building trades workers and electrical instrument fitters. Two-thirds are likely to be past infections that are unlikely to be currently infectious, which could have been transmissions from earlier clusters. The construction sector therefore continues to be at a higher risk setting for transmission, as it is challenging to maintain strict safe management and distancing measures.
The remaining unlinked cases in the community currently continue to remain in the low single digits. Increased testing has helped to identify these cases.
Everyone should continue to stay vigilant
While the number of unlinked community cases currently remain low, everyone should remain vigilant and adhere to safe management measures to reduce the spread of the virus.
This is especially critical as cases will increase when more activities resume in Phase Two.
Individuals should continue to use TraceTogether and SafeEntry to facilitate contact tracing, see a doctor if feeling unwell, and play their part to keep COVID-19 under control.
Source: Ministry of Health