Singapore to allow differentiated COVID-19 safety rules for travellers vaccinated overseas
SINGAPORE: Singapore will soon allow travellers fully vaccinated overseas to be eligible for vaccination-differentiated safety measures, the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced on Thursday (Aug 19).
From 11.59pm on Friday, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) will issue "tamper-proof" vaccination stickers to newly arrived travellers who have been fully inoculated with a vaccine under the World Health Organization’s (WHO) emergency use list.
These stickers will be affixed to the passports of the travellers.
To obtain this sticker, travellers must produce an English-language vaccination certificate to ICA officers at immigration checkpoints when they arrive in Singapore.
Vaccines under the WHO's emergency use list include Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Sinovac-CoronaVac and Sinopharm.
These travellers will be eligible for vaccination-differentiated safe management measures if they produce their passport with the valid tamper-proof stickers, MOH said in its press release.
Singapore has adopted a vaccination-differentiated approach as it gradually reopens the economy. Among other measures, individuals who are fully vaccinated are currently able to dine-in in groups of five at F&B outlets.
Currently, only Singaporeans, permanent residents and long-term pass holders with vaccination records in Singapore’s National Immunisation Registry are eligible for the differentiated safety rules. All other incoming travellers have to obtain a negative pre-event test by a MOH-approved test provider that is valid for 24 hours.
The announcement on Thursday will be applicable to travellers including Singapore citizens, permanent residents, long-term pass holders and short-term visit pass holders from all countries and regions.
In its press release, MOH added that IT systems will be enhanced by September so that travellers, upon verification of their eligible vaccination status at entry, will also be recognised by SafeEntry (Business) App through their TraceTogether tokens or mobile apps.
Authorities on Thursday also announced the launch of the country’s first vaccinated travel lanes with Germany and Brunei Darussalam. Under the vaccinated travel lanes, fully vaccinated travellers departing from Germany or Brunei can enter Singapore without serving a stay-home notice.
Fully vaccinated COVID-19 patients who have mild or no symptoms will also be able to recover at home from Aug 30, as part of a pilot scheme by the Health Ministry.
The COVID-19 cases will spend the "first few days" in a medical facility, before moving to home isolation.
The patients and their household members must be fully vaccinated and must not belong to any vulnerable groups, such as the elderly or immunocompromised.