SINGAPORE – Ministry of Health (MOH) has reported huge drop in the number of people seeing doctors in the past two months for infectious diseases usually transmitted from person to person. Good hygiene and social distancing practice were seen as a major contributing factor on the steep drop.
From around the usual 2,500 to 3,000 cases a day, the number had dropped to less than 700 from the beginning of May.
The data collected from around 20 polyclinics shows similar drops in the number of cases for ailments like diarrhoea, conjunctivitis and hand, foot and mouth disease. Most of the group’s clinics have up to 50% drop in patients with respiratory tract infections since early this year.
Dr Edwin Chng, the group’s medical director said the this was also largely credited on the government’s effort to restrict movement of the people and requiring them to wear mask outside.
The Ministry of Health as early as February advised the doctors to allow five days of sick leave to patients with respiratory symptoms, such as fever, cough, sore throat and runny nose, in an effort to curb the spread of the disease.
Medical experts also noticed cases dropping significantly especially on the business district as most people are now working from home. While some infectious and respiratory related diseases have fallen, people staying at home are more prone to other diseases. For instance, the number of dengue infections – mosquito disease are currently on the rise. There are currently more than 7,000 dengue infections to date this year, more than double the cases from the previous year.