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Key Actions to Manage Transmission of COVID-19 in All Dormitories

  1. The Inter-agency Taskforce is paying close attention to the transmission of COVID-19 at foreign workers dormitories. To further manage the transmissions within the dormitories, and to allow health measures to be implemented more effectively, the Taskforce will further reduce the number of workers in the dormitories and also implement a medical support plan at all dormitories.

    TRANSFERRING WORKERS TO ALTERNATIVE LIVING AREAS

  2. Given the continued rise in number of the confirmed cases in the dormitories, the Taskforce has stepped up on transferring workers to alternative living areas from the dormitories, particularly foreign workers in essential services. These workers travel daily to their workplaces to keep essential services going during the current circuit breaker period.
  3. Transferring essential services workers to alternative accommodation significantly minimises the entry and exit of workers to the dormitories, and reduces the interaction with the workers who are not allowed to leave the dormitories during the circuit breaker period. Doing so also allows for safe distancing measures to be implemented more stringently and effectively within the dormitories which are designed for communal living, thus reducing the risk of transmission within the premises.
  4. Since last week, about 7,000 workers in essential services have been moved out of the purpose-built dorms into alternative living areas. Medical screening was conducted to ensure that the workers did not have symptoms before moving into the alternative accommodation.
  5. The Taskforce has activated suitable alternative living areas to house the foreign workers. These include the Singapore Armed Force’s camps, floating hotels, sports halls, as well as vacant HDB blocks. More alternative accommodation are being activated progressively to house these workers if required.

    MEDICAL SUPPORT PLAN

  6. With the moving out of some workers from the dormitories, isolation facilities within the dormitories have been set up. In line with the medical support plan that the Taskforce has put in place at all the dormitories, the priority is on immediate stabilisation to contain the outbreak in the gazetted dorms to minimise new cluster formation. At the same time, the Taskforce aims to break the cycle of infection, by intensifying healthcare resources and support to affected sites.
  7. Medical posts are being set up at eight gazetted dormitories, and we aim to have medical touchpoints at all 43 dormitories. Workers who are unwell are encouraged to see the doctor, so that they can be diagnosed and given appropriate treatment. Those who show signs of being unwell with respiratory symptoms will be separated as early as possible from the other dormitory residents. The enhanced medical coverage across the dormitories will facilitate early identification, prompt contact tracing, and effective isolation of COVID-19 cases.
  8. Forward Assurance Support Teams (FAST) have also been deployed to all dormitory sites to support the dormitory operators in stabilising and normalising living conditions. The Taskforce will also ensure sound management and public health measures at the alternative living areas where workers are being transferred to, so as to take care of the workers.

    ENHANCED SAFE DISTANCING MEASURES AT ALL DORMITORIES

  9. To actively contain the spread of the virus, more stringent measures on safe distancing have been implemented at all dormitories, including factory-converted dormitories.
  10. Other than workers in essential services, workers residing at all the dormitories will not be allowed to work during the circuit breaker period.  The Taskforce will also work with dormitory operators to ensure that there is no inter-mixing of workers between blocks and where necessary, between floors.  The workers’ health will be monitored daily.
  11. Our aim is to keep our workers living in the dormitories safe and healthy.  There will be a lot of adjustments required of the workers, and we would have to help them adjust accordingly.  The strict measures are necessary and crucial to our national effort to keep the virus under control.