Singapore reports 7 new COVID-19 cases; major contact tracing initiative launched

Gurdip Singh
·1-min read

Singapore, Oct 27 (PTI) Singapore reported seven new COVID-19 cases, including six imported infections, on Tuesday, even as the country launched a mega contact tracing initiative to boost the reopening of public services.

All the imported cases have been placed on 'stay-home notice' upon arrival here, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said. The seventh case was from the community area, while there was no new case from the foreign workers' dormitories, which had earlier emerged as major virus hotspots.

With the cases on Tuesday, Singapore's coronavirus tally stands at 57,980.

Singapore has begun the distribution of 'TraceTogether' tokens, which will help in the contacting-tracing exercise.

Though the current number of locally-transmitted cases is very low, this is not the time to be complacent, and contact-tracing continues to be critical, Minister-in-charge of the Smart Nation Initiative Vivian Balakrishnan said on Monday.

The initiative called 'TraceTogether-only SafeEntry' will be progressively implemented by the end of the year at popular venues including workplaces, schools, malls, food and beverage outlets and hotels, the Smart Nation and Digital Government Office (SNDGO) said.

The 'TraceTogether' application or token would be mandatory by end-December at all public venues, including restaurants, workplaces, schools and shopping malls.

All foreigners have to follow the 'TraceTogether' programme either through the application or the token system.

Currently, over 50 per cent of the population - more than 2.5 million people - have downloaded the TraceTogether application, and over 400,000 tokens have been distributed, said Dr Balakrishnan, who is also the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

He said if the situation improves world-wide in the months ahead, then the borders could be opened. PTI GS IND IND