Singapore reports 27 new COVID-19 cases, including SIA pilot who initially tested negative

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SINGAPORE: Singapore reported 27 new cases of COVID-19 as of noon on Wednesday (Dec 30).

One was a community case, while the rest were imported.

Of the imported cases, one was a Singapore Airlines pilot who had tested negative for COVID-19 upon returning to Singapore but later developed symptoms, said the Ministry of Health in a preliminary update.

The remaining 25 imported cases were all placed on stay-home notice or isolated upon their arrival in Singapore.

Among the imported cases, seven are Singaporeans or permanent residents, and six are foreign domestic workers.

Further details will be released on Wednesday night, said the health ministry.

As of Wednesday, Singapore has reported a total of 58,569 COVID-19 cases, with 29 fatalities from the disease.

Singapore began its COVID-19 vaccination exercise on Wednesday, with healthcare workers at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) the first to get the shots.

Senior staff nurse Sarah Lim, 46, was the first person in Singapore to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, with more than 30 other healthcare workers at the NCID also set to receive the jab.

They are getting their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by United States pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and German firm BioNTech. This vaccine requires two injections, given 21 days apart. Those who receive the first dose on Wednesday are scheduled to return for their second dose on Jan 20 next year.

Vaccinations will subsequently be rolled out to more healthcare institutions.

This will be followed by vaccinations for the elderly – starting with those aged 70 years and above – from February. Thereafter, other Singaporeans and long-term residents who are medically eligible for vaccinations can do so.

The vaccine will be free for all Singaporeans and long-term residents, including long-term work permit holders.

Singapore entered Phase 3 of its reopening on Monday. Social gatherings of up to eight people are now allowed in public, up from the previous five currently. Similarly, households can receive up to eight visitors.

Worship services are now allowed to have up to 250 people, and capacity limits in public places such as malls and attractions have been increased as well.

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