3 more inmates who worked at same kitchen at Changi Prison Complex test positive for Covid-19

SINGAPORE – Three more inmates, who all worked in the same prison kitchen at Changi Prison Complex as an earlier Covid-19 case, have tested positive, said the Singapore Prison Service (SPS) on Thursday (May 20).

The three inmates, aged 56, 46, and 28, are linked to a Sats Food Services food worker known as Case 63160 who was also working at the kitchen in Institution A5, and tested positive on May 13, said SPS in a statement. Another inmate could have the virus and confirmatory tests are pending.

There is currently no indication that the virus has spread beyond the prison kitchen where they had worked at, it added. It has conducted tests on about 5,000 inmates, staff and vendors from Cluster A, and these tests have returned negative, SPS said.

Changi Prison Complex consists of two clusters – Cluster A and Cluster B – which contain five institutions each.

The three inmates were quarantined in Institution A5 in their cells on May 13 and subject to a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test upon being identified as close contacts, said SPS.

Their first PCR test result came back negative on May 14, but a second test five days into their quarantine came back positive on May 18.

They were transferred to the quarantine centre at Selarang Park Complex. This centre is located outside the Changi Prison Complex, and is where Covid-19 positive inmates are quarantined for close monitoring by a medical team.

“The three inmates are currently well. They will only be transferred back to the general inmate population when they have recovered from the infection,” SPS added.

All other inmates and staff from Institution A5 have tested negative for their second PCR test. Inmates and staff from Institution A5 will undergo repeated PCR testing in coming days for early detection of any possible incubating cases, said SPS.

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The latest three cases bring the number of cases linked to the Changi Prison Complex cluster to seven, said a Ministry of Health statement on Wednesday (May 19).

MOH said that the serology test results for the three inmates – known as Cases 63426, 63427, and 63428 – are pending. All three had developed either a fever or a cough on May 18.

SPS said that in addition to the three inmates who tested positive on May 18, one other inmate tested “presumptive positive” for Covid-19 on the same day.

He is currently undergoing further confirmation tests. He had also worked at the prison kitchen at Institution A5 and is a cellmate of the three confirmed cases, said SPS.

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