The recent surge in Covid-19 cases can be attributed to the more transmissible Delta variant of the Covid-19 virus.
Although the Delta variant can spread more easily between individuals, it appears to be detectable at an earlier stage as compared to the OG Covid-19 virus.
In light of that, quarantine orders for those exposed to Covid-19 will be shortened from 14 to 10 days starting next week.
Moving forward, home recovery will also become the default care management for fully vaccinated individuals.
According to MOH, the Delta variant has a relatively shorter incubation period of up to 4 days. In comparison, the original strain has an incubation period that averages about 6 days.
As it stands, the current quarantine period is for 14 days. This was set to account for the maximum Covid-19 incubation period of the OG virus.
From next week, the quarantine period will be shortened to 10 days as the Delta variant can be detected much earlier.
Despite the shortened duration, patients can only be cleared after testing negative at the end of their quarantine. They will also be required to undergo daily testing until day 14 to mitigate any remaining risk of infection.
The change, however, will not apply to dormitory residents as well as travellers entering Singapore.
MOH also announced that home recovery will become the default care arrangement for fully-vaccinated Covid-19 patients.
In particular, the programme will be extended to those aged 50 and below with no underlying illnesses.
Parents of infected children aged five and above can also let their kids recover at home.
However, hospitals will only allow it after they deem the children medically eligible.
Originally, a select number of patients were made to trial the home recovery programme.
After attaining positive feedback during the 1-month trial, the programme will be expanded progressively, starting with children and eventually to seniors.
The shift to home recovery being the default care arrangement will impact about half of active Covid-19 cases, according to The Straits Times (ST).
Minister Ong Ye Kung also mentions that the move was sped up due to the rising number of cases. The change will greatly reduce the stress on our public healthcare system.
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