Fully vaccinated status to remain after Feb 14 only if booster shots are taken within nine months of second dose
If the fully vaccinated status lapses, individuals cannot enter vaccination-differentiated places like malls and restaurants.
Fully vaccinated status will lapse from Feb 14, if a booster shot is not taken within nine months of the second dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines.
For those who took Sinovac and SInopharm vaccines, their fully vaccinated status will also lapse if booster shots are not taken within nine months after their third dose.
This was announced by Minister of Health Ong Ye Kung on Wednesday (Jan 5). The move was done to ensure Singapore keeps their wall of resilience strong against the COVID-19 virus, said Mr Ong.
Individuals who are no longer considered fully vaccinated will not be allowed to enter vaccination-differentiated venues, such as malls and restaurants.
The Feb 14 date means that those who took their second dose before May 20, 2021 but have not taken their booster shots will no longer be considered fully vaccinated.
“It is a matter of time before it (the Omicron COVID-19 cases) starts to multiply quickly. We must be prepared for that,” said Mr Ong.
Those who have completed their primary series vaccination regime around five months ago have been invited to register for their booster shots. In the coming weeks, elderly aged 60 and above will be invited after around four months from their primary series vaccination regime.
Currently, there are no additional booster doses for individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 and have completed their primary series vaccination regime.
However, recovered persons who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated will have to take one dose of the mRNA (two if they are taking Sinovac/Sinopharm) after at least three months of recovery to remain fully vaccinated.
Eligible individuals are urged to get their booster shots to ensure that protection from the vaccines are restored.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) has also adjusted their healthcare protocols where cases will be managed based on the severity of symptoms and health status. While the Omicron variant is more transmissible than previous variants, it is less severe.
High-risk cases (elderly, pregnant women, those with pre-existing health issues) with significant symptoms will be managed under Protocol One. Both the antigen rapid test (ART) and polymerase chain reaction test (PCR) are required and an isolation order of 10 or 14 days will be given depending on the vaccination status.
Low-risk cases with mild symptoms will recover under Protocol Two where they have to self-isolate at home for at least three days. Once they feel well and a self-administered ART produces a negative result, they can exit self-isolation and resume normal activities.
Those with positive ART results will have to continue self-isolation and self-test everyday until a negative ART result is produced.
Close contacts of positive cases will be cared for under Protocol Three. On the first day, an ART has to be taken and submitted online. Individuals can only go out with a negative result. If tests remain negative after a week, no further tests are required.