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Restrictions Can Ease From 13 June If Cases Fall - 3 Things To Know About Phase Two Exit, Covid-19 Test Kits, Vaccines

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Nia Sarah  •  May 31, 2021

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With the number of community cases in Singapore stabilising over the last two weeks, the country is on its way to a better Covid-19 situation that involves testing, tracing and vaccinating, as heard from Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's speech on 31 May 2021 (Monday). This comes after the country entered Phase Two (Heightened Alert) on 26 May, which continues to last till 13 June 2021. If you're wondering how the new announcement affects you, here's what you need to know:

1. Restrictions will ease after 13 June

PM Lee said Singapore should be able to relax its Covid-19 restrictions after 13 June if the number of community cases falls further. The number of daily cases has reduced since Phase Two (Heightened Alert) and the authorities will determine if the outbreak is under control "in a week or so". Currently, people are only allowed to go out in groups of two, have only two social gatherings in a day and households can only accept two unique visitors per day. Dine-in is prohibited at eateries and hawker centres, and only food takeaway and delivery is allowed.

2. Covid-19 test kit will be available

DIY Covid-19 test kits will soon be sold overcounters at pharmacies. They will be less uncomfortable than regular polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests and easier to use. Other alternatives to PCR tests include antigen rapid tests (ART), saliva tests, breathalysers and wastewater surveillance. Singapore is implementing a strategy to test faster, more liberally and extensively. These Covid-19 tests will be available for frontline workers and anyone who wants to frequently test themselves for their own safety. People who appear well in normal work, social and community settings will also be tested as part of routine testing.

3. More people will get the vaccine

Singapore is adopting a new norm in their approach to the Covid-19 vaccine programme - it will now be done routinely and in large-scale measures. The Multi-Ministry Taskforce (MTF) said it will speed up the process of vaccination in the next 2 months, prioritising first dose vaccinations. There will also be faster vaccine deliveries. The next group to be vaccinated will be students, with bookings opening tomorrow. The remaining group of young adults aged 39 and younger will start their vaccination programme in mid-June and will be given a two-week priority window to book their appointments.