In the COVID-19 world, “unlinked” is a scary word.
We don’t know where an infection came from, who it has spread to, and who to place under quarantine.
So what do you do when an unlinked case in a school is detected?
Make the entire school learn from home, of course.
1 of the Community Cases Reported on 1 May is a Sec Student; School to Go on Full HBL Next Week
One of the seven new community cases reported yesterday (1 May) was a 15-year-old student at Edgefield Secondary School.
To prevent a potential cluster from forming, the school will shift to home-based learning from next Tuesday to Friday. Monday is a school holiday.
The 15-year-old developed a sore throat, runny nose, and loss of smell on 28 Apr and reported sick in school the next day.
She also sought medical treatment at a clinic, where she was tested for COVID-19.
She was confirmed to be COVID-19 positive the next day was conveyed to the National University Hospital in an ambulance.
Since her case is unlinked, other students, staff, and external vendors of the school will be tested for COVID-19.
Those who have been in close contact with the 15-year-old will also be placed on quarantine.
The school will be cleaned and disinfected as well.
The last thing we need now is both a hospital and a school cluster.
Advised to Minimise Contact With Others
Students will likely be happy about having more time to sleep, but parents may be worried about the new arrangement.
That’s why Edgefield Secondary School said it will “provide instruction and support” for its students with online and physical materials.
It will also keep in regular contact with parents and students.
The school advised those who have been tested as a precautionary measure to minimise contact with others until their results are out.
6 Other Community Cases, 2 in a Dorm
Three of the six remaining community cases are linked to the 46-year-old nurse who was the first in the Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) cluster to test positive.
All three are all elderly people aged 70 and above.
An 88-year-old woman who was a part of the TTSH cluster died from COVID-19 complications. She had a history of cancer, hypertension, congestive cardiac failure, stroke, and hyperlipidaemia
Besides the student, there are three other unlinked cases in the community.
One is a 19-year-old Singapore PR who is a student at Singapore Management University (SMU).
She has been attending classes virtually and has only visited the campus once on 21 Apr.
She was asymptomatic and her infection was detected when she took a pre-departure test in preparation for a trip.
Since she was identified as a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case when she first arrived in Singapore last Dec, the health ministry believes she could be shedding minute viral fragments from a past infection.
Her positive serology test seems to support this theory.
A 22-year-old Malaysia national who works as a spa therapist at Spa 9 was also found to be carrying the coronavirus with no known links to confirmed cases.
She developed a runny nose on 28 Apr, and sought medical treatment at a clinic where she was tested for COVID-19. Her test result came back positive the next day.
The third community case is a 50-year-old Singaporean PR who works as a manager at DIC Asia Pacific.
She had only gone to her workplace, located at 78 Shenton Way, on 26 and 27 Apr in the past month.
She travelled to Japan on 13 Mar and returned to Singapore on 9 Apr, where she served a stay-home notice until 23 Apr.
During her stay, she tested negative for COVID-19.
However, she then developed body aches on 27 Apr and a fever the next day, prompting her to seek medical treatment at a clinic on 29 Apr.
There, she was tested for COVID-19 and her result came back positive the next day.
The other two locally transmitted cases reside in a dormitory, Pasir Panjang Residence, located at 33 Harbour Drive.
Both have been fully vaccinated.
Featured Image: Google Maps