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24 Jan 2020

24th Jan 2020

1. The Ministry of Health (MOH) has on 24 January 2020 confirmed two more imported cases of novel coronavirus infection in Singapore. 

2. The second case was announced on 23 January as tested preliminarily positive, pending confirmation test. Her test result has now confirmed that she is positive for novel coronavirus. She is a 53 year-old female Chinese national from Wuhan who arrived in Singapore with her family on 21 January 2020. She is currently warded in an isolation room at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) and her condition is stable.

3. The third case is a 37 year-old male Chinese national from Wuhan, who is the son of the first confirmed case announced on 23 January. 

About the cases

Second case 

4. The case presented at Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) Emergency Department with fever and cough on 22 January, at 9pm.  She was classified as a suspect case and immediately isolated, and notified to MOH. On 23 January, MOH announced that she was tested preliminarily positive, pending confirmation tests. The test results confirmed she is positive for the novel coronavirus on 24 January. 

5. The patient reported that she was asymptomatic during the flight to Singapore on 21 January. She subsequently developed fever and cough later that day. She sought medical treatment at Raffles Hospital on 22 January and was subsequently transferred to TTSH Emergency Department and admitted to NCID on 23 January at 1am for further assessment, given her clinical symptoms and travel history from Wuhan. The patient was diagnosed to have pneumonia and has been isolated since presentation at TTSH Emergency Department. 

6. Prior to hospital admission, the patient stayed at J8 Hotel at 8 Townshend Road and indicated that she had visited Orchard Road, Marina Bay Sands and Gardens by the Bay. She had travelled on public transport, including MRT and taxi. Contact tracing has commenced. The risk of infection from transient contact, such as on public transport or in public places, is assessed to be low. 

Third case 

7. The case was identified as a close contact of the first case, and was isolated as a suspect case at SGH at 6:30 pm on 23 January as he was symptomatic. On 24 January, at 1pm he tested positive for the novel coronavirus. 

8. MOH has initiated epidemiological investigations and contact tracing to identify individuals who had close contact with him. 

Update on contact tracing for the first confirmed case

9. Contact tracing for the close contacts of the first confirmed case of the 66 year-old male Chinese national from Wuhan is ongoing. As of 23 January, 12pm, MOH has identified 46 close contacts of the first confirmed case. 24 of them have left Singapore, including his eight travelling companions. 17 have been contacted. One has been isolated (Case 3) and the remaining 16 are being quarantined. Efforts are ongoing to contact the remaining 5. 

10. The health status of all close contacts will be closely monitored. As a precautionary measure, they will be quarantined for 14 days from their last exposure to the patient. In addition, all other identified contacts who have a low risk of being infected will be under active surveillance, and will be contacted daily to monitor their health status. 

11. Our public hospitals have put in place measures to screen and manage suspect and confirmed cases. MOH has also reminded doctors and healthcare workers to be highly vigilant, and maintain strict infection control and prevention measures. 

12. Given the high volume of international travel to Singapore, MOH expects to see more suspect cases and imported cases. We urge the public to remain calm and vigilant, and to adopt good personal hygiene practices. 

Update on suspect cases

13. As of 12pm, 24 January, MOH has been notified of a cumulative total of 44 suspect cases, of which 13 have tested negative for coronavirus, and three have tested positive.  Test results of the remaining 28 cases are pending.

Available masks to meet Singaporeans’ needs

14. Those with respiratory symptoms such as cough or runny nose should be socially responsible and wear a mask when they need to go out. Masks are generally not needed for protection of people who are well.

15. We would like to assure the public that there are sufficient stocks of masks in the warehouses and government stockpiles. We are working with retailers to move available stocks to the retail shops, and stocks will be available progressively from today.

Health advisory

16. Singaporeans are advised not to travel to the whole of Hubei Province. MOH also advises Singaporeans to continue to exercise caution and attention to personal hygiene when travelling to the rest of China.

17. All travellers should monitor their health closely for two weeks upon return to Singapore and seek medical attention promptly if they feel unwell. Travellers should inform their doctor of their travel history. If they have a fever or respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough, shortness of breath), they should wear a mask and call the clinic ahead of the visit.

18. Travellers and members of the public should adopt the following precautions at all times: 

  • Avoid contact with live animals including poultry and birds, and consumption of raw and undercooked meats;
  • Avoid crowded places and close contact with people who are unwell or showing symptoms of illness;
  • Observe good personal hygiene; 
  • Practise frequent hand washing with soap (e.g. before handling food or eating, after going to toilet, or when hands are dirtied by respiratory secretions after coughing or sneezing); 
  • Wear a mask if you have respiratory symptoms such as a cough or shortness of breath;
  • Cover your mouth with a tissue paper when coughing or sneezing, and dispose the soiled tissue paper in the rubbish bin immediately; and
  • Seek medical attention promptly if you are feeling unwell.




Category: Press Releases