COVID-19: Singapore records highest weekly hospitalisation and ICUs admission for 2023

Singapore is witnessing a surge in Covid-19 cases currently. In the past week, the country registered the highest number of weekly hospitalisation and ICU admission in the current year, as per the Ministry of Health.

Recent data showed that 965 new Covid-19 patients were admitted to hospitals between December 10 and 16. As many as 32 patients were also moved to the intensive care units (ICU). The week prior recorded figures of 763 and 23, respectively.

As per data, the infections mostly affected people over the age of 60.

The weekly infection also rose to 58,300 cases, from 56,043 cases the previous week.

However, the 7-day moving average daily estimated number has decreased. On December 17, the number recorded was 7,730. The next day it dipped to 6,820, following another dip, to 6,530, on December 19.

MOH said that the numbers reported could be lesser than the actual number of cases. “Healthcare utilisation indicators such as hospitalised and ICU cases typically lag behind the estimated weekly number of infections. This is due to the time taken for symptoms to develop in COVID-19 patients,” the ministry said.

Rise of JN.1 variant, MOH advocates mask usage

The MoH has advised people — even if they do not feel sick — to keep the masks on in crowded outdoor spaces; in indoor spaces full of people; and around vulnerable people more susceptible to the infection.

Most of the Covid-19 patients in Singapore are infected by JN.1, a sublineage of the coronavirus’ Omicron subvariant BA.2.86. The World Health Organization (WHO) on Tuesday (December 19, 2023) designated COVID-19 variant JN.1 as a “variant of interest”.

Based on the available evidence, the additional global public health risk posed by JN.1 is currently evaluated as low, WHO said.

“Despite this, with the onset of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, JN.1 could increase the burden of respiratory infections in many countries,” WHO warned in its X post.