The COVID-19 pandemic is a bit like a never-ending, mediocre M. Night Shyamalan movie: you’re not sure what’s happening, it’s full of twists, and you frequently experience nausea.
After living with this detested virus for around two years, we now know better than to celebrate when case numbers go down and restrictions ease.
Much like a bear in hibernation, the coronavirus is only taking a break, and will soon be on the prowl again.
In recent weeks, cases have gradually been rising again, in part thanks to the emergence of the Omicron variant.
And it’s not so much the daily case numbers that are worrying us, but the weekly infection growth rate.
Weekly COVID-19 Infection Rate Rises to 1.5 As S’pore Reports More Cases
Singapore’s weekly infection growth rate has continued its upward trend, rising to 1.5 yesterday (6 Jan) from Wednesday’s 1.28.
The rate—the ratio of community cases for the past week over the week before—has increased for the 13th day in a row.
And when this figure surpasses 1, it means that the number of new weekly COVID-19 cases is increasing.
813 New COVID-19 Cases
813 new COVID-19 cases were reported yesterday by the Ministry of Health (MOH), up from 805 the day before.
Of these, 390 were imported infections, 404 were from the community and 19 were in migrant worker dormitories.
There were also 365 Omicron cases detected yesterday, down from the 440 infections on Wednesday—yesterday’s Omicron cases comprised 131 local infections and 234 imported cases.
One more COVID-19 case passed away from complications, taking our death toll to 835.
ICU Utilisation Rate Down
The good news is that our ICU utilisation rate dropped to 47.1% from Wednesday’s 50.5%.
At the moment, there are 171 COVID-19 patients in hospital, 17 of whom require oxygen supplementation.
Three patients in the ICU required close monitoring, while 13 patients were critically ill.
As of Wednesday, 87% of our population has completed their full regimen, 88% has received at least one dose, and 44% has received booster shots.
Omicron Wave Could Lead to 15,000 Cases Daily
When the Omicron wave does finally hit us, it could lead to 15,000 new cases every day, warned Associate Professor Kenneth Mak.
Assoc Prof Mak, MOH’s director of medical services, said the number is consistent with the numbers seen in other countries that have grappled with the Omicron strain, such as South Africa, the UK, and Denmark.
And with this comes the risk of our hospitals getting overwhelmed, which is why vaccinations and boosters remain key in our fight against the virus.
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