Travellers Arriving At Land & Sea Checkpoints Will Undergo Temperature Screening For Coronavirus
After the Ministry of Health (MOH) confirmed Singapore’s first Wuhan virus case, the government has been on high alert.
On Friday (24 Jan), CNA reports that travellers arriving in Tuas, Woodlands and ferry terminals will undergo temperature screening to detect cases of the coronavirus.
Screening at Tuas, Woodlands & ferry terminals
As the city prepares for the CNY (Chinese New Year) period, Singapore will expect a high influx and outflow of people via all travel methods.
To manage the high volume of travellers, authorities will expand temperature screening to the two land checkpoints at Tuas and Woodlands, as well as the ferry terminals.
The Immmigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) confirmed the news in a press release today (24 Jan).
Temperature screening at the checkpoints will begin at noon, by healthcare assistants. Officials will transfer any suspected cases to the hospital immediately for assessment.
The procedure for travellers going via the different modes of transport will be as follows:
Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong told CNA,
“I think this is necessary given the escalating situation, and the high volume of travel on CNY.”
Despite the city’s vigilance, Mr Wong warned that temperature screenings are not foolproof. The virus has an incubation period of two to twelve days so infected victims may not detect the symptoms immediately.
Multiple layers of defence against coronavirus
The government formed a Ministerial task force to coordinate efforts on a potential coronavirus outbreak on Wednesday (22 Jan).
CNA quoted Mr Wong who said that,
We need a system of multiple layers of defence.
Healthcare workers will serve on the frontline as they detect suspected cases in the city. However, locals must also play a part by observing proper hygiene, wearing face masks, avoiding large social gatherings and visiting a doctor once they suspect the onset of the virus.
Health Minister Gan Kim Yong says that these measures are intended to protect individuals and their loved ones.
Mr Gan told CNA,
This is not only to protect yourself, but also to protect your loved ones.
Retailers boost supplies of face mask
On Friday (24 Jan), TODAY reports that protective mask retailers are working with suppliers to meet the rising demand. This comes after the MOH urged locals to purchase surgical masks which are more effective for disease prevention.
NTUC Fairprice also revealed that sales of face masks have increased by up to five times for the past week.
A FairPrice spokesperson told TODAY,
We urge customers to only buy what they need so that everyone will be able to have one.
Remain alert and vigilant
The task force will release verified information about the coronavirus outbreak. Hence, citizens are advised not to spread false or unverified information.
While they may continue their day to day activities like usual, they must also stay alert and vigilant.
Here’s hoping every Singaporean will be safe over the CNY weekend.