There seems to be a pattern that emerges whenever a new COVID-19 variant evolves.
First, the variant arrives in the country through imported infections. Then, some of these infections are passed on to local cases.
We’ve already been through these first two stages with the Omicron variant, the highly-mutated strain which is believed to be more transmissible than previous iterations.
Now, it seems we be moving on to the third stage: Omicron clusters.
Suspected Omicron Cluster Detected in Bukit Timah Gym With 3 Cases
A suspected Omicron cluster has been detected at an Anytime Fitness outlet in Bukit Timah Shopping Centre, the Ministry of Health (MOH) revealed in a news release yesterday (20 Dec).
The cluster comprises three COVID-19 cases, of whom two have tested preliminarily positive for the Omicron variant. The result for the remaining case is pending.
The ministry said it is ringfencing the cases through contact tracing. All three cases are fully vaccinated and have mild symptoms.
More details of the three cases were also provided in the update:
One of the cases is a 24-year-old man who developed a sore throat and fever on 18 December 2021 and sought medical attention at a General Practitioner (GP) clinic where he underwent a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test.
His test result came back positive for COVID-19 infection on the same day.
The second case in the cluster is an 18-year-old female who is a student at Ngee Ann Polytechnic and was last in school on 15 December.
She developed a sore throat and fever on 18 December and sought medical attention at a GP clinic where she was tested for COVID-19, MOH said.
A PCR test the next day confirmed that she had been infected with COVID-19.
The last case in the cluster is a 21-year-old male who is a student at At-Sunrice Global Chef Academy but had not been to school recently.
He developed a sore throat on 18 December and sought medical attention at a GP clinic where he was tested for COVID-19.
His PCR test result also came back positive for COVID-19 infection on 19 December.
Close Contacts to be Placed on Quarantine
MOH said that both staff and visitors of the Anytime Fitness outlet who are identified as close contacts will be placed on quarantine.
Other visitors to the gym between 15 December and 17 December will be issued Health Risk Warnings as a precautionary measure. They will also be contacted by MOH for a one-time targeted PCR test.
“All visitors to the affected premises are advised to monitor their health closely, and minimise social interactions as far as possible, for 14 days from their date of visit. They are encouraged to see a doctor immediately if they feel unwell,” it added.
At the moment, there are 71 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant here; 65 imported and six local.
The ministry said we should expect to find more cases at our borders and in the community, which is why we should abide by the rules in place, and get vaccinated if possible.
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Featured Image: Facebook (Anytime Fitness Bukit Timah)
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