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Short-term pass holders on extended stays in Singapore now eligible for free COVID-19 vaccination

Short-term pass holders on extended stays in Singapore now eligible for free COVID-19 vaccination

A COVID-19 vaccination exercise for the elderly at Tanjong Pagar Community Centre in Singapore on Jan 27, 2021. (File photo: Jeremy Long)

SINGAPORE: Short-term pass holders who have been in Singapore for an extended period of time can now get COVID-19 vaccine jabs under the national vaccination programme, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said on Wednesday (Aug 18).

Among those eligible are holders of short-term work passes and special passes, such as those on training employment passes, training work permits and work holiday passes.

“Although their stay in Singapore is temporary, vaccinating this group would further strengthen the resilience of our society against COVID-19,” MOH added.

Eligible short-term visit pass holders who have been in the country for at 60 days continuously can also get the jabs. Many of them are unable to return home because of global travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, said MOH. 

Age-eligible holders of short-term work passes and special passes can walk in to any vaccination centre to get their first jab without a prior appointment.

They will not be able to walk in to polyclinics or participating Public Health Preparedness Clinics for their vaccination, said MOH.

They are also required to bring along identifying documents, such as a passport and their work or special passes for verification, MOH added. These pass holders will not receive any notification from MOH.

Eligible short-term visit pass holders with phone numbers registered with the Government will receive an SMS from MOH with a personalised appointment booking link. These will be sent out progressively over the coming days, added the Health Ministry.

They will not be able to walk in to vaccination sites to get their jabs without an appointment.

“Short-term visit pass holders with valid pass extensions who do not receive an SMS from MOH by Aug 22 may request for an appointment by sending MOH supporting immigration documentation via www.vaccine.gov.sg/appeal,” the ministry said.

“We will review such requests on a case-by-case basis over the next few weeks, after receiving these requests.”

While vaccination is free for eligible short-term pass holders, they will not qualify for the Vaccine Injury Financial Assistance Programme for COVID-19 Vaccination, MOH said.

“Any medical bills incurred by them following the vaccination appointment will also be subject to the prevailing charging policies,” the ministry added.

All eligible short-term pass holders will be able to view their vaccination status on the TraceTogether app from late-September.

About 40,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses are currently being administered daily in Singapore, down from a peak of 80,000, MOH said.

As of Monday, 76 per cent of Singapore’s population has received their full COVID-19 vaccination regimen, with 82 per cent having received at least one dose.

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Source: CNA/kg

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