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Five unlinked cases, as Covid-19 cluster at Bukit Merah View market grows to 73

SINGAPORE – Eleven new Covid-19 cases were confirmed on Sunday (June 20), including five unlinked community cases that consist of a financial consultant, a dental assistant, a Housing Board engineer and two retirees.

This is the highest number of unlinked cases since June 12, when five unlinked cases were also reported.

The youngest is a 22-year-old woman who works at Q&M Dental Surgery at Redhill MRT, and who wears full personal protection equipment at work, said the Ministry of Health (MOH).

The HDB engineer is a 52-year-old man who was detected as part of the Bukit Merah View community testing. He was last at work on May 13.

Two cases, one linked and one unlinked, did not seek medical attention when they developed respiratory symptoms.

An 83-year-old woman, whose case is currently unlinked, had a fever and cough on June 16 but did not seek treatment until June 18, when she was taken to the National University Hospital and tested positive for Covid-19.

Her family member, an 81-year-old woman, developed a cough and fatigue on June 18 but did not seek medical attention. She, however, participated in the MOH-offered free testing for those who visited 115 and 116 Bukit Merah View on June 19 and was placed in quarantine on the same day.

She has tested preliminarily for the Delta variant.

Meanwhile, the cluster at Bukit Merah View food centre and market has grown to 73 people, up from 70 on Saturday. All three new cases were already in quarantine when they tested positive for the coronavirus.

All three had taken tests that first returned negative for Covid-19. Among them is a 35-year-old stall assistant at Tiong Bahru Yong Tao Hu who had tested negative in both antigen rapid and polymerase chain reaction tests for Covid-19 when he sought treatment at a clinic for respiratory symptoms on June 14.

He was later quarantined on June 15 after he was identified as a workplace contact of others in the cluster, and then tested positive in a subsequent polymerase chain reaction test on June 19.

There were two imported cases, who returned from Saudi Arabia and Indonesia. Both had been placed on stay-home notice upon arrival in Singapore.

In total, there were 11 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus on Sunday , taking Singapore’s total to 62,414.

MOH said there were 108 community cases in the past week, up from 36 in the week before. The number of unlinked cases has also risen from 15 two weeks ago to 21 in the past week.

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Currently, 142 confirmed cases are still in hospital. Of these, most are stable or improving, although one is in critical condition in the intensive care unit.

Another 196 are isolated and cared for at community facilities, where patients who have mild symptoms or are clinically well but still test positive for the virus recuperate.

Singapore has had 34 deaths from Covid-19 complications, while 15 who tested positive have died of other causes.

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