Thursday, 30 March 2017

Singapore's First Zika cluster of 2017

Update 27 Apr 2017: New Zika cluster identified at Highland Road/Jansen Close
New Zika cluster identified at Highland Road/Jansen Close
This file foto shows thermal fogging being done at Simon Place, where the 1st cases of Zika of 2017 were reported. TODAY file foto

A new Zika cluster at Highland Road & Jansen Close has emerged, said the National Environment Agency (NEA) on Tuesday (April 25).

The agency said on its website that 2 new cases had been reported in the past 2 weeks, and it has started vector control operations in the area.

Highland Road is adjacent to Flower Road, where previous Zika cases had been reported.

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Singapore confirms 4 new Zika cases

Singapore has confirmed four new Zika cases with two found in two new clusters at Highland Road and Jansen Close, said the National Environment Agency (NEA) on Tuesday.

NEA said the authority has commenced vector control operations at the cluster areas.

The other two cases were discovered at the Glasgow Road cluster on Monday and the Poh Huat Road West/Poh Huat Terrace/Terrasse Lane cluster on Tuesday.

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What you need to know as S'pore sees first active Zika cluster of 2017
Simon Place is 2017's first Zika cluster. Foto: Jason Quah/TODAY

Months after the disease died down here, the Zika virus re-emerged in the Republic on Tuesday (Mar 28) with a new cluster marked out at Simon Place near Kovan MRT station.

As the National Environment Agency (NEA) urges vigilance with the log of 2017’s first active Zika cluster, here's what you need to know about last year’s outbreak, & how you can protect yourself this period.
  • First imported Zika case: May 7, 2016, through a man who travelled back to Singapore from Brazil
  • First locally transmitted Zika case: August 27, 2016, through a woman residing at Block 102 Aljunied Crescent.
  • Number of cases by 2016’s end: 458. The bulk of the cases were reported in September. By November, the number of new cases tapered to 12. Four cases were reported in December.
  • Last Zika case before Tuesday: March 21, 2017.
  • Largest Zika cluster in Singapore: In the Aljunied Crescent/ Sims Drive area. The cluster was closed on Oct 9, 2016 after no new cases were reported there for two weeks.

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Zika infection reported again in Singapore

Two cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection in Singapore have been confirmed at Simon Place, Hougang, according to the National Environment Agency (NEA) today. “Both cases are residents in the vicinity and from the same household,” the agency said in its website.

This is the first Zika cluster spotted this year in the republic while the first case of locally transmitted Zika infection in Singapore was reported on Aug 27 last year. NEA said the Zika cluster was notified Tuesday (yesterday), and vector control operations were being carried out in the vicinity. The agency said it had commenced vector control operations since yesterday afternoon, as well as outreach activities at the cluster.

As of today, NEA has inspected about 120 premises out of about 400 premises in the Simon Place cluster to check for mosquito breeding, and also conducted ground checks in the vicinity.

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Singapore confirms two new cases of Zika virus
A worker fogs the common area of a public housing estate at a new Zika cluster in Singapore September 1, 2016. REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore has confirmed two cases of locally transmitted infections of the Zika virus in a northeastern part of the city state, the National Environment Agency said on Wednesday, describing it as the first Zika cluster of 2017.

The viral disease carried by mosquitoes has spread to more than 60 countries and territories since an outbreak was identified in Brazil in 2015, raising alarm over its ability to cause microcephaly as well as Guillain-Barre syndrome.

Singapore had already reported six cases in the first 12 weeks of this year, the agency's website shows. Last year, more than 400 people became infected with the virus, following discovery of the first case in August.

related: First Zika cluster of 2017 detected at Simon Place: NEA

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Singapore spots first Zika cluster this year
NEA says the Zika cluster was notified Tuesday & vector control operations being carried out in the vicinity

Two cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection in Singapore have been confirmed at Simon Place, Hougang, according to the National Environment Agency (NEA) today.

"Both cases are residents in the vicinity and from the same household," the agency said in its website.

(This is the first Zika cluster spotted this year in the republic while the first case of locally transmitted Zika infection in Singapore was reported on Aug 27 last year)

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Singapore confirms 2 cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection

Two cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection in Singapore have been confirmed at Simon Place, which is regarded as the first Zika cluster of 2017, said National Environment Agency (NEA) in a press release on Wednesday.

The authority revealed that both cases are residents in the vicinity and from the same household. The Zika cluster was notified on Tuesday, and vector control operations are being carried out.

NEA has commenced vector control operations since the afternoon of Tuesday, as well as outreach activities at the cluster.

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458 cases of Zika infection reported in 2016

Minister for Health Gan Kim Yong stated that as of 31 Dec 2016, 458 Zika cases have been reported to the Ministry of Health (MOH) since the first discovered case of Zika infection in August last year.

This was one of his answers to the questions filed by Mr Ang Wei Neng, MP for Jurong GRC, who asked the Minister for Health whether he can provide an update on the spread of the Zika virus in Singapore, how many new Zika cases have been reported in November and December 2016, how many of these cases are of pregnant women, and what is the total number of pregnant women infected by the Zika virus in Singapore and of these, how many have given birth and whether any of these babies have birth defects.

The Minister said that the incidence of new reported cases has been on the decline. 12 cases were reported in November and 4 cases were reported in December. "In comparison, 283 cases and 43 cases were reported in September and October respectively," he noted.

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Tracking of Zika Cases and After-Effects

As at 31 Dec 2016, 458 Zika cases have been reported to the Ministry of Health.  The incidence of new reported cases has been on the decline.  12 cases were reported in November and 4 cases were reported in Dec.  In comparison, 283 cases and 43 cases were reported in September and October respectively.

As of 31 Dec 2016, a total of 17 pregnant women have been diagnosed with Zika and reported to MOH.  Four of the women have since given birth, and their babies show no signs of abnormalities thus far.  One had a miscarriage for reasons not linked to Zika while two pregnancies were terminated for personal reasons.  As the two foetuses were at early gestation, it is not possible to determine whether there will be Zika-related abnormalities.  The remaining 10 cases are in their 2nd and 3rd trimesters and their babies will be monitored over 3 years as part of the monitoring programme.  There is currently no obvious evidence to show that there are any Zika-related abnormalities.

MOH has put in place a programme to monitor infants whose mothers were exposed to the Zika virus during their pregnancies.  We will track their development until they are three years old. Given the presence of the Aedes mosquito here in Singapore, we are likely to continue to have Zika cases in Singapore.  Some of these cases may be undiagnosed as the infection may result in mild or even no symptoms.  I urge fellow Singaporeans to remain vigilant, and to do our part to prevent mosquito breeding so as to protect ourselves and our loved ones.

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Full Coverage:
First Zika cluster of 2017 reported at Simon Place near Kovan MRT: NEA
Thailand considers Zika tests for all pregnant women
S'pore's first and largest Zika cluster closed, 2 more remain: NEA
Singapore's first Zika cluster of 2017 reported at Simon Place (CNA)
What you need to know as S'pore sees first active Zika cluster of 2017
First Zika cluster of 2017 reported in Simon Place
Singapore's first Zika cluster of 2017 reported at Simon Place
Baby with Zika-related birth defect born in San Diego County
Cases of Zika-Linked Birth Defects Dropped in Brazil in 2016
RNA Nanoparticles Programmed for Zika Vaccine
Singapore confirms two new cases of Zika virus
Singapore spots first Zika cluster this year
First Zika cluster of 2017 reported at Simon Place in Hougang
Why were there fewer microcephaly cases from Zika last year?
Two locally transmitted Zika cases confirmed near Kovan MRT: NEA
A Vaccine for Zika? Working on It!
First Zika cluster of 2017 detected at Simon Place: NEA
Zika infection reported again in Singapore
Singapore confirms 2 cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infection
Miami's Miller School of Medicine: development of early-stage Zika virus vaccine
First Zika cluster of 2017 reported in Hougang
Residents near Kovan warned about Zika
Singapore's first Zika cluster of 2017 reported at Simon Place

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