BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN – New COVID-19 infections have slowed in the past seven days, falling 32 percent compared to the previous week.

The health ministry reported 713 coronavirus cases over the past week, down from 1,047 infections in the preceding week.

This is the first time Brunei’s weekly case count declined in four weeks, but health authorities have warned that it is still too early to tell whether the current outbreak has peaked.

There has also been a slight drop in the weekly positive test ratio to 3.2 percent, compared to 3.32 percent in the previous week.

Health experts believe that positive test rates need to fall below three percent as a benchmark of sufficient testing.

Brunei averaged 3,274 tests a day in the past week, a 28 percent decrease from the previous week.

The number of COVID-19 recoveries also soared 161 percent over the past seven days, while four coronavirus-related deaths were recorded this week.

To date, 338,339 people or 51.5 percent of the population have received at least one vaccine dose.

Some 23.2 percent of residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 after getting two jabs.

Following the temporary suspension of first-dose vaccinations two days ago, the ministry has moved forward the second-dose appointments of 13,089 people.

The public are advised to check the status of their vaccination slots on the BruHealth app.

Volunteers from the Football Association of Brunei unload supplies at the Menglait Sports Complex which will be donated to frontliners. Photo: Courtesy of FABD

Overall COVID-19 tally tops 3,000

The health ministry detected 133 new coronavirus infections on Friday, raising the cumulative confirmed cases to 3,093.

Giving his daily COVID-19 update, Health Minister YB Dato Dr Hj Md Isham Hj Jaafar said 62 of the new cases were linked to nine existing clusters and another 71 of the additional infections were unlinked.

The Champion 7 oil field and related vessels cluster remains the largest active cluster in Brunei with 397 cases, followed by Chung Hua Middle School Kuala Belait with 291 infections.

However, BruHealth data Friday showed that Brunei-Muara has surpassed Belait district with the highest number of active cases. There are currently 1,781 active cases in the country.

In Brunei-Muara, The Mall in Gadong and Department of Immigration and National Registration are the two largest active clusters with 102 and 69 cases, respectively.

In addition, recoveries totalling 153 on Friday exceeded the number of daily new cases for the second time this week.

Nine people are in critical condition and another 27 people require close monitoring in the Intensive Care Unit.