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7 more workers at Westlite Woodlands dorm test positive for Covid-19, bringing total to 19

SINGAPORE — Seven more workers from the Westlite Woodlands dormitory have tested positive for Covid-19 after recovering from past infections, bringing the total number of cases at the dormitory to 19, the Ministry of Manpower clarified on Thursday (April 22).

A foreign worker is seen with a healthcare personnel at Westlite Woodlands dormitory on April 22, 2021.

A foreign worker is seen with a healthcare personnel at Westlite Woodlands dormitory on April 22, 2021.

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SINGAPORE — Seven more workers from the Westlite Woodlands dormitory have tested positive for Covid-19 after recovering from past infections, bringing the total number of cases at the dormitory to 19, the Ministry of Manpower clarified on Thursday (April 22).

The cluster first began when a 35-year-old Bangladeshi worker staying there was found to have contracted the coronavirus earlier this week. He had undergone rostered routine testing before being diagnosed.

Later, after one of the man’s roommates tested positive at a dedicated quarantine facility, precautionary tests were then conducted on all residents at the dorm.

Besides the 35-year-old and his roommate, 17 others have now been found to be infected after the authorities began “special testing operations” for residents at the migrant worker dormitory, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said.

All 17 had recovered from past infections. 

“These cases were immediately isolated and conveyed to the National Centre for Infectious Diseases. 

“MOH, together with an expert panel that comprises infectious diseases and microbiology experts, is investigating if they are re-infection cases,” it added.

The 35-year-old worker, a work permit holder who works as a construction supervisor at Prosper Environmental & Engineering, had already completed his Covid-19 vaccination on April 13.

However, the other 17 workers have not been vaccinated. This was confirmed by Associate Professor Kenneth Mak, director of medical services at MOH, in response to a question from TODAY at a press conference by the Government’s Covid-19 task force on Thursday. 

On Thursday evening, MOH said that the roommate of the construction supervisor had also been fully vaccinated.

On Wednesday, in a circular written by Westlite Woodlands to its clients, it was stated that more than 1,000 residents will be moved into government quarantine facilities due to the flare-up in infections.

Dormitory residents were seen leaving in dozens of buses on Thursday afternoon, ushered by personnel in full personal protective equipment.

A spokesperson for Centurion Corporation, which runs Westlite Woodlands, has verified the letter.

“The document was issued by Westlite Woodlands yesterday to employers as an early alert to ensure that necessary measures affecting their workers could be quickly carried out for the safety and welfare of the workers and the wider community,” the spokesperson told TODAY in response to queries.

“Safe living measures continue to be enforced at all Westlite Accommodation worker dormitories, in line with government directives and guidelines.”

CLARIFICATION: The Ministry of Manpower has clarified that the total number of infected residents at the dormitory is 19 and not 18 as earlier reported.

Related topics

Covid-19 coronavirus MOH foreign workers dormitory Westlite Woodlands Dormitory

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