As virus cases rise, Singapore PM tells of constant trial and error

Singapore’s transport minister Khaw Boon Wan (foreground) on board an isolation facility at Tanjong Pagar terminal. (Facebook pic)

SINGAPORE: With confirmed Covid-19 cases rising to more than 13,000 Singapore urgently needs to house the large numbers to prevent hospitals from getting swamped, the republic’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said today.

In a Facebook posting Lee said exhibition centres at Singapore Expo and Changi and a shipping terminal at Tanjong Pagar had been converted for use as temporary isolation facilities.

“These community facilities allow our hospitals to focus on the more serious cases,” said Lee. “The pandemic has forced us to improvise and come up with innovative, workable solutions on the ground. It’s a constant trial and error, to find the best way to help the most people in the shortest time.”

At noon today, Singapore reported a total of 931 new cases, bringing the tally to 13,624. The majority are foreign workers residing in dormitories while only 15 cases are Singaporeans or permanent residents.

From Saturday’s tally of 12,693, Singapore classified 10,525 of them as dorm residents or about 3% of the 323,000 foreign workers who live in dormitories.

The health ministry said that most cases are mild illnesses and are being monitored in community isolation facilities or in hospital general wards. None of them is in intensive care.

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