Health

Singapore health when ‘living with Covid’


The number of infections increases while life gradually “new normal”, Singapore proactively allocates patients according to symptoms, expands the model of home isolation, psychological treatment, vaccination, relieves pressure on hospitals. frontline.

Since the pandemic broke out, Singapore has only recorded 60 deaths from Covid-19, fully vaccinated for about 82% of the population. In June, the government announced it was moving towards “living with Covid-19”. The strategy is to focus on tracking and handling outbreaks with vaccination and treatment, without strict closures, lockdowns or work-from-home requirements.

In the same June, Singapore gradually eased restrictions. But in the weeks that followed, the nation faced many challenges. The number of nCoV infections skyrocketed. The reopening plan was delayed and some health regulations were reintroduced.

After months of relatively low numbers of new cases, two weeks ago, Singapore surpassed 1,000 daily infections, the highest level since April last year. However, the government calls this “the road to go through” as the country adapts and adjusts to the model of living with Covid-19.

“We are gradually transitioning to a new normal. This is an uncertain and tumultuous journey,” Health Minister Ong Ye Kung said at an online press conference on September 18.

The hospital recorded a sudden increase in the number of patients, but More than 98% have no symptoms or only mild symptoms. Health officials recommend that patients go to general hospitals or regular clinics to relieve pressure on frontline facilities treating Covid-19.

Singaporeans wear masks when going out on May 14. Photo: Reuters

On September 19, Singapore Open home isolation model for fully immunized patients aged 12-69 years without severe symptoms. Accordingly, people are allowed to isolate, treat and recover at home if they do not have underlying diseases. The goal of the strategy is to reduce the burden on hospitals, ICUs, and public health resources in an endless battle.

Dr Ong Eu Jin Roy, a family doctor in Singapore, said the medical staff were nearing exhaustion.

“We try to be persistent, but it takes a destination to visualize the goal. The government wants to open up and treat Covid-19 as a long-term pathogen, I think this is great, because we are reaching the limit of the world. It’s over. You can’t stay on high alert every day. It can’t go on anymore,” he said.

In addition to strengthening the capacity of the health service to handle the escalating number of cases, Singapore expands the service Psychological treatment, relieve stress during the pandemic, says Dr. Steven Tucker, an oncologist at Tucker Medical.

“Stress affects everyone, although their worries can vary, like: ‘I’m going to catch the virus. Is my family member sick? Do I need to quarantine? Can I contact you? What medical service?” he explained. “It all led to psychological pressure, but Singapore reacted very quickly, acknowledged the reality and worked to resolve it.”

Dr Ong said the country of 5.7 million people has not yet reached the stage where people are used to Covid-19 like flu. “It becomes endemic when half of our friends have or have had the disease. Right now, maybe one in 10 or one in 12 people we know has nCoV.”

Even if Covid-19 is mainly dangerous to people who have underlying diseases and have not been vaccinated, to live with it, people still need to take familiar measures such as wearing masks, keeping a safe distance, and keeping a safe distance. while working and eating at home.

Dr Ong also believes that Vaccinations, weekly testing in the workplace is key to the containment strategy in light of emerging variations. They can remain until Covid-19 is brought under control on a global scale.

In Singapore, people are not allowed to enter restaurants or go to public places until they have had two doses of the vaccine. This helps boost the nation’s vaccination rates.

Singapore does a relatively good job of testing, tracing and vaccination. People also agree to abide by government regulations. Policies remain in place, as the disease persists around the world, multiple variants spread rapidly, and the global vaccination campaign ran out of steam. This is a basic principle of public health: if one person gets sick, everyone gets sick. Therefore, we must always be vigilant, said Jeannette Ickovics, a professor of psychology and public health at Yale-NUS University in Singapore.

“How to live with Covid-19? Back to the basics: wash your hands, wear a mask, avoid gathering in enclosed spaces, keep a safe distance, if you feel unwell, stay at home. should try to arrange work reasonably, schedule work and be flexible,” she added.

Thuc Linh (Follow Aljazeera)

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