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Singapore’s coronavirus cases top 12,000

The key outbreak hotspots turned out to be dormitories where migrant workers from South Asia live, only 2.5% of whom were tested for the virus

SINGAPORE, April 24. /TASS/. Singapore’s Health Ministry has announced 897 more coronavirus cases on Friday, the total has now exceeded 12,000.

"Overall, 12,075 infections were recorded in the country since the pandemic broke out," the daily statement reads.

Singapore ranks first in Southeast Asia in coronavirus cases. The key outbreak hotspots turned out to be dormitories where migrant workers from South Asia live. According to the ministry, around 2.5% of the workers were tested for the virus, while there are more than 323,000 South Asian workers in the country.

The healthcare agency also underscored that 12 people died from coronavirus-related causes in Singapore.

Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday extended the partial lockdown introduced on April 7 by four more weeks until June 1. The lockdown measures imply closure of all businesses and services that are not of social importance and are not essential in maintaining stable life of the country. Schools and universities are employing distance learning.

At the same time, grocery stores and pharmacies are still open, while cafes and restaurants switched to takeaways only. There has not been any ban placed on city travel, with public transport and taxis still working. However, the government strongly advised citizens to stay at home, only venture into shops alone and observe social distancing when in public places. The authorities also introduced mandatory wearing of face masks outside except for children aged under two.

In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus — named COVID-19 by the WHO — have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 2,700,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 191,000 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 750,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.