COVID-19: No visitors in TTSH wards after five test positive

Entrance to Tan Tock Seng hospital; building exterior. Taxis arriving at the hospital. (PHOTO: Getty)
Entrance to Tan Tock Seng hospital; building exterior. Taxis arriving at the hospital. (PHOTO: Getty)

SINGAPORE – No visitors will be allowed into Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) wards after a fully vaccinated nurse and four others were found to be positive and preliminarily positive respectively for COVID-19.

In a Facebook post on Thursday afternoon (29 April), TTSH announced further tightening measures and said barring visitors from all wards is necessary "to contain the situation and protect our patients and staff".

TTSH previously said in a Facebook post on Wednesday night that it was tightening its ward visiting policy by allowing only two pre-registered visitors throughout a patient's stay and barring visitors from the affected ward where the infected nurse was working at.

Nurse developed symptoms on Tuesday

The infected nurse is one of three unlinked local community cases reported on Wednesday, out of a total of 23 new cases.

She is a 46-year-old Filipino woman who is deployed at Ward 9D, a general ward in the hospital.

The woman developed a cough, sore throat and body aches on 27 April, and sought medical treatment at the TTSH.

Her test result came back positive for COVID-19 on the same day, and she was warded at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID). Her serology test result is pending, said the Ministry of Health (MOH).

The nurse had received her first dose of COVID-19 vaccine on 26 January, and the second dose on 18 February, the ministry added.

"The COVID-19 vaccine is effective in preventing symptomatic disease for the vast majority of those vaccinated, but it is possible for vaccinated individuals to get infected," the ministry said.

Following the detection of the woman as a COVID-19 case, the hospital locked down the affected ward, the MOH said.

"As a precautionary measure, all staff who treated the infected patients, as well as all visitors, patients and staff working in Ward 9D will be placed on quarantine. Epidemiological investigations and contact tracing are ongoing," added the ministry.

In a statement about the cases on Wednesday, TTSH said close staff contacts have been swabbed and are being placed on leave of absence pending further investigations while it is also swabbing and isolating all patients at the affected ward.

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