The Bukit Merah and Redhill estates have unfortunately become a Covid-19 hotspot, with at least 5 clusters declared there.
Residents in several blocks in the area have also had to undergo mandatory testing to weed out possible cases.
As a further precaution, free Covid-19 testing kits are being offered to residents in the area.
They can collect them over the weekend till Sunday (27 Jun).
Just how serious is the situation in Bukit Merah and Redhill?
According to the Ministry of Health’s (MOH’s) latest update on Saturday (25 Jun), 5 blocks in the area have been declared as Covid-19 clusters.
Cases have also popped up among a resident at an NTUC Health senior group home in Bukit Merah View and workers at Redhill MRT, Bukit Merah Central NTUC FairPrice and McDonald’s Tiong Bahru Plaza.
Now, even a block in nearby Tiong Bahru has been afflicted with 13 cases.
Clearly, prompt measures must be taken to contain the spread.
While conducting testing operations for residents is a way to find out who’s been infected, it takes time and requires them to queue up at designated stations.
Thus, a more efficient way might be to get residents to test themselves using Do-It Yourself Antigen Rapid Test (ART) kits.
They’re less uncomfortable and invasive than polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests, and have simple-to-follow instructions.
While they’re now available for purchase over the counter at pharmacies, Bukit Merah and Redhill residents can get them for free this weekend.
According to MOH, the collection exercise started on Saturday (26 Jun), and will continue on Sunday (27 Jun).
Residents can head down to their nearest Residents’ Committee Centre with their ID from 10am-6pm to get them.
In a Facebook post on Saturday (26 Jun), Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Edwin Tong revealed some details of the residents eligible.
He said that the People’s Association (PA) gave out the free test kits to residents living within the boundaries of 3 roads:
According to Google Maps, all 5 of the block clusters are in this area.
If you’re still unsure whether you can collect them, key in your postal code at https://www.gowhere.gov.sg/art.
If you’re afraid the kits will run out, you’ll be glad to know each member of your household can claim 1 pack containing 2 ART test kits.
This includes children and domestic helpers too.
Thus, there should be enough to go around.
If you live within the specified area, it’s natural to feel a little apprehensive, what with cases all around your estate.
However, it’s important not to panic. The free test kits are meant to help prevent further transmission of the virus by helping to identify cases earlier.
Thus, MOH has strongly encouraged eligible residents to collect the kits and test themselves.
So if you haven’t collected them yet, please do. As long as we cooperate, we’ll get through this testing period together.
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Featured image adapted from Facebook.
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