Covid-19: Singapore reports three confirmed cases of B117 strain

SINGAPORE (Jan 27): Three previously reported cases have tested positive for the B117 variant and could be linked, according to the Singapore Ministry of Health (MOH) yesterday.

The ministry said it was revealed by the whole genome sequencing and phylogenetic analysis conducted by the National Public Health Laboratory.

In its full data released here, MOH said epidemiological investigations revealed that Cases 59340 and 59351 visited Jewel Changi Airport on Dec 31, 2020 between 2.35 pm and 9.50 pm, and Case 59028 was at Changi Airport Terminal 3 on the same day between 7.48 pm and 8.49 pm.

As a precautionary measure, MOH said it will commence a special testing operation to offer testing for staff who have been working from Dec 31 at Jewel Changi Airport, and at the shops and food establishments that are open to the public at Changi Airport Terminal 3.

Case 59028 is a 24-year-old male Korean national who works at Azur at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport, who was confirmed to have COVID-19 infection on Jan 5.

Case 59340, meanwhile, is a Singaporean who works at Singapore Scouts Association and was confirmed to have the infection on Jan 15.

Case 59351 is the spouse of Case 59340 and works at OCBC Tampines Centre One, and she was confirmed COVID-19 positive on Jan 15.

B117 is dubbed as a potentially more contagious strain of COVID-19 that is circulating in the UK.

As at noon yesterday, the republic reported 14 new cases, all imported, thus bringing the total tally to 59,366.

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