When a COVID-19 cluster formed in Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH), residents were understandably worried.
After all, a hospital is full of vulnerable people who are more likely to have some underlying condition.
And since those with comorbidities are more susceptible to severe illness after contracting COVID-19, the hospital and authorities have taken drastic measures to contain the outbreak in the hospital and community.
Unfortunately, it may have come too late for one patient.
88YO Woman from TTSH Cluster Dies from COVID-19 Complications
An 88-year-old Singaporean woman who was part of the TTSH cluster died from complications due to COVID-19, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said yesterday (1 May).
The Singaporean woman had been staying in Ward 9D – where most of the infections in the cluster were detected – since 14 Apr.
She had a history of cancer, hypertension, congestive cardiac failure, stroke, and hyperlipidaemia.
MOH said the National Centre for Infectious Diseases has reached out to the woman’s family and is extending assistance to them.
The 88-year-old is Singapore’s 31st COVID-19 fatality and the first since 13 Mar this year, when a 61-year-old man died from complications due to the coronavirus.
TTSH Cluster is the Country’s First Hospital Cluster
The COVID-19 cluster in TTSH is Singapore’s first in a hospital. And with a total of 16 infections, it’s also our largest active cluster.
The authorities discovered the group of infections after a fully vaccinated nurse from TTSH fell ill and tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday (27 Apr).
Since then, 15 others have been found to be carrying the disease as well.
- 10 patients
- two doctors
- a nurse
- healthcare assistant trainee
- a cleaner
- a spouse of a TTSH patient
Hoping to draw a ring around the infections, the hospital will test 1,100 inpatients and 4,500 staff working in the TTSH wards.
It has also locked down four affected wards and minimised patient and staff movement.
No visitors are allowed to enter the hospital, except for critically ill patients.
On Friday (30 Apr), Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said the authorities expect more cases linked to the cluster to emerge.
9 New Locally Transmitted Infections Reported Yesterday
Of the 34 new COVID-19 cases reported yesterday, 9 were locally transmitted.
Seven are in the community, of whom three are linked to 46-year-old female nurse who was the first in the TTSH cluster to test positive.
These new cases linked to the TTSH cluster are all elderly people aged 70 and above.
The other four community cases are unlinked.
The remaining two locally transmitted cases reside in a dormitory, Pasir Panjang Residence, located at 33 Harbour Drive.
They have both completed their vaccination regimen.
Besides that, 25 imported COVID-19 cases were reported, all of whom were placed on stay-home notice or isolated upon arrival in Singapore.
Community Cases Spiking
Cases in the community are surging at the moment.
The number of new cases in the community has shot up from 11 in the week before to 37 in the past week.
The number of unlinked cases in the community has also increased from four in the week before to 10 in the past week.
In response to the growing number of infections, the authorities introduced new measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus, including advising residents to limit their social interactions to two a day.
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