The Ministry of Health identified 11 new cases of Omicron JN.1 on December 29, prompting a renewed call for people to prioritise health and receive Covid-19 booster shots. None of these cases exhibited significant symptoms or had a travel history abroad.

«The rise in Omicron JN.1 suggests this variant is still spreading. If you experience symptoms like fever, cough or breathing difficulties, or have health concerns, promptly visit a hospital or health centre,» said the ministry in a December 30 notice.

Citing the World Health Organisation (WHO), it said the new Omicron JN.1 variant is considered less severe and categorised as a Variant of Interest (VOI), not a Variant of Concern (VOC).

The ministry’s Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has observed a rise in the number of Covid-19 cases through its Infectious Diseases Surveillance System. It urges citizens to take preventive measures to curb the transmission of the new virus, such as by regularly washing hands with soap or sanitiser, covering mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, and disposing of masks and tissues appropriately.

«The ministry advises those at high risk such as the elderly, chronically ill and pregnant women to avoid crowded events. It’s crucial to protect against the disease, practise social distancing and ensure proper care,» the ministry said.