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03 Jun 2021  (605 Views) 
Covid-19 crisis

The folly of community and unlinked cases
Many people pay attention to the community cases, more so to the unlinked cases. 

They believe that every infection should be traced to its source and linked to a previously infected person, so that all infections could be contained. 

Tremendous effort and resource are being spent on safe entry and contact tracing to achieve this goal.

Lately, we see an increase in the number of "unlinked cases". This has been a source of alarm. There is a fear that the infection is going out of control.

This is a fallacy.

From my observation, the covid infections are now more common than expected, but they are mostly mild and asymptomatic. There is no need for alarm.

Many cases are being detected due to increase in swab testing which are now carried out regularly among front line workers in the transport and health sectors and those involved in outdoor work.

Recently, large scale swab testings are carried out among residents of residential areas which had a few infected residents. 

With more testing, it is obvious that more of the "mild cases" will be detected. This is confirmed by the news reports that I have read. 

It is also obvious to me that the large efforts and resources spent on safe entry recording and contact tracing are useless. 

What is the point of linking the infection? The only value seems to be that journalists can write interesting stories about the infections, and supplement them with colorful charts and diagrams.

They are useless in infection control.

A useful statistic is the daily updates that from the Ministry of Health on the number of covid patients that require oxygenation. This number is small and stable. 

Well done to the Ministry of Health and to the doctors and nurses.

I ignore the covid patients that are being observed in hospital or community facilities. Most are discharged within a few days.

A few patients might become more sick and need oxygen treatment. These cases are captured in the daily updates, which remained at a low level. 

Many people believe that the safer choice is to "stay at home". They overlook the fact that many infections are transmitted through family members at home.

I find it quite comical that many people are paranoid with fear about the daily report of small number of unlinked and community cases. Two dozen cases are small in a population of six million.

Most of these cases are mild and are captured by the increase in swab testing.

There is the possibility that things may turn out to be worse in the days ahead. So far, this is not a credible trajectory. There is no reason to panic yet. Be patient, if you need to want an excuse to panic.


Tan Kin Lian

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