Singapore, Oct 10 (IANS) Staring from October 9, Singapore will start offering Covid-19 booster vaccines to healthcare and frontline workers who have completed their inoculation against the virus six months ago, the Miistry of Health (MOH) announced.
The city-state is also working with various institutions to progressively roll out booster vaccinations to eligible persons in institutionalised settings, such as prisons and residential care facilities, Xinhua news agency quoted the ministry as saying.
The MOH added that Singapore will progressively invite persons aged 30 years and above who have also completed their primary series vaccination regimen around six months ago to make an appointment for their booster dose.
As of October 8, 83 per cent of the local population has received two doses of Covid-19 vaccines, and 85 per cent have received at least one dose.
The Ministry also announced that from Monday onwards, Singapore will extend home recovery to unvaccinated persons aged 12 to 49 years, vaccinated infected persons aged 70 to 79 years, as well as children aged five to 11 years old.
To protect the unvaccinated individuals and reduce the strain on the healthcare system, Singapore will expand the Vaccination-Differentiated Safe Management Measures (VDS) for entry into shopping malls, attractions, hawker centres, and coffee shops from Wednesday.
It means that only groups of up to two fully vaccinated persons will be allowed to dine in at all regular food and beverage establishments, and to enter shopping malls and attractions.
Meanwhile, the Ministry said that with the experience gained from the Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTLs) to Brunei and Germany, the city-state will be extending the VTLs to eight more countries, namely Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, the UK, and the US, to enter Singapore from October 19.
It will also jointly launch VTLs with South Korea for travel between the two countries from November 15.
In the last 24 hours, Singapore reported 3,703 new Covid-19 cases, hitting a new record high and bringing the total tally in the country to 124,157.
This was the fifth consecutive spike of the daily new cases surpassing the 3,000 mark.
Of the new cases, 2,868 were in the community, 832 were in migrant worker dormitories, and three were imported cases, the MOH said.
A total of 1,569 cases are currently warded in hospitals, with 302 serious illnesses requiring oxygen supplementation, and 40 in critical condition in the intensive care units (ICUs), said the MOH.
Also in the same period, 11 more people died due to the disease, increasing the total death toll to 153.
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