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Covid-19: From Jan 1, voluntarily unvaccinated people can't show negative test result to bypass entry curbs

SINGAPORE — From the start of next year, voluntarily unvaccinated individuals can no longer present a negative pre-event test result in order to enter vaccination-controlled settings such as malls, standalone stores and attractions, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said.

Covid-19: From Jan 1, voluntarily unvaccinated people can't show negative test result to bypass entry curbs
  • From Jan 1, voluntarily unvaccinated individuals can no longer present a negative pre-event test result to enter premises doing vaccination checks
  • From Dec 1, vaccine-related controls will be enforced at more settings and activities, including libraries
  • Visits to hospitals and resident care homes will resume from Nov 22 with enhanced vaccination checks and controls
  • Visits will be allowed only when both the hospital patient or care home resident and their visitors are fully vaccinated
  • MOH will also allow visits for medically ineligible patients or residents and visitors at these places

 

SINGAPORE — From the start of next year, voluntarily unvaccinated individuals can no longer present a negative pre-event test result in order to enter vaccination-controlled settings such as malls, standalone stores and attractions, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said.

"We will further strengthen efforts to protect unvaccinated individuals from getting infected, as they are subject to greater risks of severe illness," MOH said on Saturday (Nov 20), adding that the roll-out date will "allow time for more individuals to complete their primary series vaccination regime".

Apart from this, from Dec 1, vaccine-related controls will be introduced at more settings and activities, including in all libraries under the National Library Board (NLB) and some activities in community clubs and centres under the People’s Association (PA), the ministry said.

MOH announced the new rule for voluntarily unvaccinated people in an update on the latest Covid-19 safety measures, about two hours after issuing its initial press release.

Under current rules, unvaccinated individuals can get a pre-event test and show a negative test result to enter premises that have vaccine-related controls. MOH will remove this concession. 

This means that subject to venue or event-specific limits, only fully vaccinated, recovered, or medically ineligible individuals, or children aged 12 and below will be allowed to enter settings where there are checks on vaccination status.

The authorities are also working on letting more senior-centric activities resume in a safe manner, with the use of vaccination checks, the ministry said.

“In the coming weeks, seniors can look forward to more active-ageing programmes such as exercise programmes offered by the Health Promotion Board and participate in other forms of learning under the National Silver Academy,” the ministry said, adding that details will be released soon.

The resumption of these activities is in line with updated adjustments to Singapore’s safety measures and with lessons drawn from the resumption pilots launched so far by PA and national sports body Sport Singapore (SportSG), MOH added.

VISITS TO HOSPITALS, RESIDENTIAL CARE HOMES 

To continue protecting vulnerable individuals in hospitals and residential care homes, but conscious also of the well-being of patients and residents, MOH said that it will allow visits to hospitals and care homes with enhanced vaccination controls in place from Nov 22. 

“The strict implementation of such measures will minimise the risk of outbreaks, which may otherwise jeopardise the lives of vulnerable patients and residents and affect the operating capacity of our hospitals and residential care homes,” it said.

Visits will be allowed only when both the hospital patient or care home resident and their visitors are fully vaccinated. 

As a concession, MOH will also allow visits for medically ineligible patients or residents and visitors. 

If the patient or resident or visitor, or all, are not fully vaccinated, visits will only be allowed under exceptional circumstances on a case-by-case basis, as advised by the hospitals and care homes. 

These exceptional circumstances include patients who are in critical condition, paediatric patients, birthing and post-partum mothers, and patients requiring extra care support from caregivers such as those with mental incapacities.

Before their visits to the hospital or care home, visitors must show a valid negative antigen rapid test result obtained within the last 24 hours of each visit. All tests are to be self-funded by the visitor.

Fully vaccinated or medically ineligible visitors can opt for a rapid test administered or supervised by MOH-approved Covid-19 test providers (including tests performed at Quick Test Centres), or perform an unsupervised self-administered rapid test. 

Fully vaccinated or medically ineligible visitors who opt to undergo unsupervised self-administered antigen rapid tests will be required to show evidence of a valid test result, such as a time-stamped photo of the dated result and photo identification for verification before entry into the hospital ward or care home.

Under exceptional circumstances when non-fully vaccinated visitors are allowed, hospitals and care homes will only accept antigen rapid tests administered or supervised by MOH-approved Covid-19 test providers, including tests performed at Quick Test Centres. 

Results from unsupervised self-administered antigen rapid tests will not be accepted for this group of visitors:

  • At hospitals, each patient will be allowed to register up to two visitors for each admission with only one visitor allowed at the bedside at any one time
  • Patients who are critically ill will be allowed five registered visitors for each admission, with two visitors allowed at the bedside each time
  • Each patient can receive up to two visits a day, with each visit lasting 30 minutes
  • At care homes, each fully vaccinated or medically ineligible resident will be allowed up to four designated fully vaccinated or medically ineligible visitors, with one designated visitor allowed for each visit, and each visit capped at 30 minutes

Visitors should strictly adhere to prevailing safety rules within the care homes.

Visits will be suspended if a care home is managing an active Covid-19 cluster. 

MOH added: “We also seek the patience and understanding of visitors that some (facilities or homes) may require more time to put in place the necessary processes to facilitate visits and may start off with a smaller number of visitors to allow them to stabilise their operational processes before accommodating a larger number of visits.”

Related topics

Covid-19 coronavirus MOH National Library Board People’s Association vaccination hospitals eldercare

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