Funeral ceremony at longhouse sparks new Seruas cluster

The Star Filepix – for illustration only

By John Isaac

A NEW Covid-19 cluster dubbed Seruas Cluster in Beluru district has been identified by the State Health Department today, said the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC).

In its Covid-19 daily update today, SDMC said this cluster involves a longhouse at Serawong Tengah, Seruas, Bakong in Beluru district.

“The index case for this cluster is a 61-year-old woman who was screened for experiencing symptoms on Jan 28. The spread of the virus was believed to be through close contacts of those attending a funeral ceremony at the said longhouse on Jan 25 to 27.

“This longhouse has also been put under Enhanced Movement Control Order (EMCO). And following active detection and screening of close contacts to the index case and residents of Serawong Tengah, a total of 58 additional new positive cases were detected,” said SDMC statement as reported by Borneo Post.

It added that as of 12 noon today (Feb 7), a total 150 individuals have been screened out of which 59 positive cases were detected including the index case, 29 were tested negative and 62 others are still waiting for test results.

Following the announcement of this latest cluster, there are now 15 active Covid-19 throughout Sarawak.

The other clusters are the Bintang Daily Cluster in Meradong; Jalan Pengiran Cluster in Matu; Tabong Cluster, Bau; Indah Riang, Keranji Tabuan and Stutong Clusters in Kuching; Bedayan Cluster in Serian; Bukit Sekubong Cluster in Sebauh; Pasai Cluster in Sibu; Rakut, Jelita and Bah Sayap Clusters in Miri.

The Pasai Cluster in Sibu which stemmed from a funeral at a longhouse remains the largest. As of Feb 7, it recorded 71 new cases of the day brought the total of positive cases in this cluster to 2,359. A total of 25,500 individuals have been screened, of which 22,600 were tested negative and 541 are still awaiting laboratory results.

Rakut Cluster in Miri recorded five new cases for the day, bringing the total to 156 cases to-date. A total of 600 individuals have been screened, of which 422 were tested negative and 22 still waiting test results.

Indah Riang Cluster (Kuching) and Indah Cluster (Miri) recorded one new case each bringing total number of cases to 20 and 56 cases respectively.

For Indah Riang Cluster, there were 222 individuals who were screened of which 187 were negative and 14 still waiting test results while there were 350 individuals screened under Jelita Cluster of which 282 were negative and 12 waiting for test results.

The other 10 clusters did not record any new cases for the day.