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Source : Wikipedia.

MOH : 33 more people diagnosed with Zika virus infection

The Ministry of Health (MOH) in its press release on Wednesday, announced that another 33 people were diagnosed with Zika virus infection as of today (31 August) making the total number of cases to 115.

It also identified a potential cluster of Zika virus infection at the Bedok North Avenue 3 area.

Among these 33 people, a pregnant woman living in the Aljunied Crescent/ Sims Drive area was tested positive for Zika virus infection. MOH said that her doctor is following up closely with her to monitor her health and the development of her baby. She will be referred to a maternal-foetal medicine (MFM) specialist for counselling and advice.

MOH stated that 24 new cases were identified today. 22 of these cases were from the Aljunied Crescent/Sims Drive/ Kallang Way/Payar Lebar cluster, while the other two had no known links to the affected areas. One case lives at Joo Seng Road and the other at Punggol Way. Nine other cases found were detected as a result of MOH look-back testing of previous cases.

There is a potential cluster involving three previously reported cases. They are staying at the Bedok North Avenue 3 area. One of the cases works at the Aljunied Crescent/ Sims Drive area while the other two cases had no known links.

“Over time, we expect Zika cases to emerge from more areas. We must work and plan on the basis that there is Zika transmission in other parts of Singapore and extend our vector control efforts beyond the current affected areas. All Singaporeans can play our part to prevent mosquito breeding,” said Minister for Health Mr Gan Kim Yong.

Vector Control

The National Environment Agency (NEA) will be stepping up its vector control efforts to wider areas.

NEA is continuing with vector control operations to control the Aedes mosquito population in the existing Aljunied Crescent/ Sims Drive cluster, which now covers about 7,000 premises in Aljunied Crescent, Sims Drive, Paya Lebar Way and Kallang Way.

It has inspected about 5,500 premises in the cluster for mosquito breeding and conducted ground checks in the vicinity. 45 breeding habitats – comprising 26 in homes and 19 in common areas/other premises – have been detected and destroyed.

More than 300 personnel per day comprising NEA officers, contractors and volunteers to carry out vector control operations and outreach from 27 Aug to 30 Aug in the cluster area has been deployed.

NEA will also be commencing vector control operations and outreach efforts in Bedok North Avenue 3, comprising more than 6,000 premises. 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, and may need to gain entry into inaccessible premises by force after serving of requisite Notices, to ensure any breeding habitats are destroyed quickly.

It also had activated partner agencies of the Inter-Agency Dengue Task Force to step up localised search and destroy efforts in their respective areas to help reduce the risk of the virus spreading further.

“Vector control remains the primary way to tackle the transmission of Zika. Hence, I urge all residents in affected areas to cooperate fully with NEA officers and allow them to inspect homes so that we can spot and destroy mosquito breeding as soon as possible, and to spray insecticide to kill any mosquitoes. It is also important that everyone in the community takes immediate steps to prevent mosquito breeding in our homes by doing the 5-step Mozzie Wipeout. We can also protect ourselves from mosquito bites by applying insect repellent to curb the transmission of the Zika virus in Singapore,” said the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Masagos Zulkifli.