Thursday, September 01, 2016

Singapore: MOH/NEA Zika Update - Sept 1st



The latest update from Singapore adds 31 new cases (and a second pregnant case), bringing their total to more than 150 cases since the first announcement last 5 days ago (see Singapore MOH: 1st Locally Acquired Zika Case).

Of particular note, 3 of today's cases are not linked to previously identified clusters.

Joint MOH-NEA statement (1 September)

1.        As of 12pm, 1 September, MOH has confirmed 31 new cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection in Singapore. Of the 31, three cases are not linked to any existing cluster. They live in Tagore Avenue, Yishun Street 81 and Harvey Crescent. One of the cases confirmed today is pregnant; she is linked to the Aljunied Crescent/Sims Drive cluster. Her doctor is following up closely with her to provide support and counselling.

2.        Another five cases were detected as a result of MOH’s look-back testing of previous cases. The look-back exercise is now completed. A total of 236 samples were taken, of which 52 tested positive, and 184 were negative. 

Vector Control Update
3.        Vector control remains key to reducing the spread of the Zika virus. NEA takes a systematic and holistic approach to arrest mosquito borne transmission in Singapore, through surveillance, prevention and control, outbreak management and outreach.  The objective is to keep mosquito borne disease incidence low through reducing the mosquito population and breaking the disease transmission chain. In NEA’s approach to tackling Zika cases, similar to NEA’s approach for dengue cases, NEA not only conducts checks for mosquito breeding habitats based on cases, but also takes a preventive and risk-based approach through pre-emptive checks in areas assessed to be at higher risk, even in the absence of cases. 

4.        Premises owners should undertake vector control measures regularly, such as applying larvicide in stagnant water to kill larvae, fogging open areas when the mosquito population is high and spraying insecticides in indoor spaces to kill adult mosquitoes.  They should ensure proper housekeeping within their premises at all times to remove potential mosquito breeding habitats. Residents should also do their part to prevent mosquito breeding in their homes by doing the 5-step Mozzie Wipeout, which includes simple steps such as inverting pails and plant pot plates, and changing water in vases regularly.   

5.        NEA is continuing with vector control operations to control the Aedes mosquito population in the existing Aljunied Crescent/Sims Drive cluster. 49 breeding habitats – comprising 26 in homes and 23 in common areas/other premises – have been detected and destroyed. Indoor spraying, misting and oiling were conducted, and daily misting of common areas is ongoing. Two rounds of thermal fogging have been completed and another round will be conducted this week. 

6.        NEA officers and grassroots volunteers have completed outreach efforts to distribute Zika information leaflets in the Aljunied Crescent/Sims Drive cluster, and have commenced outreach in the expanded cluster areas in Paya Lebar Way/Kallang Way.   

7.        NEA has also conducted vector control operations and outreach efforts in Bedok North Avenue 3, Punggol Way and Joo Seng today. 

8.        Residents are urged to cooperate fully with NEA and allow its officers to inspect their premises for mosquito breeding and to spray insecticide to kill any mosquitoes. NEA may need to gain entry into inaccessible premises by force after serving of requisite Notices, to ensure any breeding habitats are destroyed quickly

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