The aim is To describe the characteristics of healthcare workers (HCWs) infected with COVID-19 and to examine their sources of exposure.

A descriptive cross-sectional study using data extracted from the centralized disease notification system comprising individuals confirmed with COVID-19 in Singapore between 23 January and 17 April 2020. Occupation of HCWs was categorized into six categories. Their job nature was classified into “frontline” or “back-end” based on the frequency of direct patient contact, and source of exposure was classified as family/household, social interaction or workplace. Chi-square and median tests were used to identify differences between categorical groups and sample medians, respectively.

A total of 88 (1.7%) HCWs were identified from 5,050 cases. Their median age was 35 years. Chinese and Indians constituted 42.0% and 31.8%, respectively, and 43.2% were foreigners. The majority (63.6%) was serving at frontlines handling patient-facing duties, 15.9% were doctors, 11.4% were nurses and 44.3% were ancillary staff. About 81.8% acquired the infection locally, of which 40.3% did not have a clearly identifiable source of exposure.

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