SINGAPORE, Dec 6 — Singapore yesterday recorded 552 new cases of Covid-19, the lowest daily case count since September 12 when 520 infections were logged. 

There were 13 more deaths due to complications from the disease.

The Singapore Ministry of Health (MOH) said that an imported Covid-19 case has tested preliminarily positive for the Omicron variant. He is a 37-year-old Singapore permanent resident who arrived here from South Africa on board Singapore Airlines flight SQ479 on Dec 1. He was on the same flight as two earlier Omicron cases, which were the first such infections to be detected in Singapore.

He is fully vaccinated and has mild symptoms.

“He had not interacted in the community and there is currently no evidence of any community transmission from the case,” the ministry said.

The man’s pre-departure test in Johannesburg on Dec 29 was negative. Upon arrival in Singapore, he was isolated at a dedicated facility, and his polymerase chain reaction tests on Dec 1 and 3 came back negative.

On December 4, he developed a fever and sore throat and was conveyed to the National Centre for Infectious Diseases, where he tested preliminarily positive for the Omicron variant.

The National Public Health Laboratory is conducting whole genome sequencing to confirm the variant, Singapore MOH said.

All 18 other passengers on the flight have tested negative for Covid-19 infection and are isolated at designated facilities.

On the coronavirus situation here, Singapore MOH said that six patients were unstable and being closely monitored in intensive care units (ICUs) to prevent their conditions from deteriorating further. 

This is up from four such cases reported the day before.

In addition, there were 52 patients who were critically ill and intubated in ICUs — two fewer than on Saturday.

In the meantime, the number of patients who require oxygen support dropped from 179 on Saturday to 155 on Sunday.

In total, there are 424 ICU beds, of which 217 are occupied — 58 by Covid-19 patients.

The overall ICU utilisation rate stands at 51.2 per cent, down from 54.7 per cent on Saturday.

Singapore MOH said that people aged 60 and older continued to be more adversely affected by Covid-19, especially if they were not vaccinated.

Among the new infections recorded yesterday, 523 were in the community, 14 were residents of dormitories housing migrant workers and the remaining 15 were imported.

There were 89 people aged 60 and older among the day’s community cases.

The ratio of community cases in the past week, compared with the week before, stood at 0.66 — higher than the ratio of 0.63 reported on Saturday.

This is the 23rd straight day that the week-on-week infection ratio has been below 1.

The 13 patients who died from Covid-19 complications were aged between 52 and 96.

“All of them had various underlying medical conditions,” Singapore MOH said, without elaborating.

In all, 759 people have died of coronavirus complications here.

Singapore has registered a total of 269,211 Covid-19 cases since the start of the pandemic last year.

Local situation

A total of 1,518 patients who have recovered from Covid-19 were discharged yesterday, including 242 aged 60 and above.

There are still, however, 863 patients who remain hospitalised — 30 fewer than on Saturday.

Over the last 28 days, the proportion of local coronavirus cases who had mild or no symptoms was 98.7 per cent, Singapore MOH said. In the same period:

  • 0.8 per cent of patients needed oxygen aid
  • 0.1 per cent were unstable and under close monitoring in intensive care
  • 0.1 per cent were critically ill and intubated in ICUs
  • 0.2 per cent died

The ministry added that it was closely tracking a coronavirus cluster at the THK Home for [email protected], which has 25 new cases, taking its total to 44. 

Of the 44 cases, one is a staff member while the rest are residents of the home. 

Vaccinations

Singapore MOH said that as of Saturday, 96 per cent of the eligible population have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

Among the total population, 87 per cent have been fully vaccinated and 87 per cent have received at least one dose of a vaccine.

The ministry added that 28 per cent of the total population have received their vaccine boosters.

In the past seven days:

  • The number of fully vaccinated patients who were critically ill in ICU was at 0.6 per 100,000 people and, for non-fully vaccinated patients, it was 3.9
  • The number of fully vaccinated patients who died was 0.1 per 100,000 people and, for non-fully vaccinated patients, it was 0.6
  • For fully vaccinated patients aged 60 and above, the number who were critically ill under intensive care was 2 and, for those not fully vaccinated, it was 34.2
  • The number of fully vaccinated patients aged 60 and older who died was 0.3 and, for those not fully vaccinated, it was 6.2. — TODAY