29 April 2020 | News
The plan guides the admission of patients into the appropriate tiered facilities for medical care and support
Image credit- shutterstock.com
The Multi-Ministry Taskforce in Singapore has a comprehensive medical strategy to ensure that individuals infected with COVID-19 receive prompt and quality medical treatment.
The clinical and scientific data from managing COVID-19 patients, as well as the current epidemiological evidence on the infection, have provided the bases for a comprehensive medical plan.
The plan guides the admission of patients into the appropriate tiered facilities for medical care and support, the transfer of patients between these facilities according to their needs, and the discharge of patients who are well and no longer infectious.
Persons with acute respiratory infections but are clinically well are issued with five-day medical certificates and are asked to isolate themselves at home.
Those who meet the clinical case definitions for COVID-19 are tested and asked to self-isolate at home as they await their test results. Those who are unable to self-isolate in their homes can do so in a Swab Isolation Facility (SIF) while awaiting their test results.
To ensure that there is available hospital capacity to care for COVID-19 patients, public hospitals have postponed non-urgent elective procedures. New capacity in isolation wards and intensive care units have been created by repurposing existing beds and hospital facilities, and acquiring additional medical equipment such as ventilators.
In addition, public hospitals have established collaborations with private sector healthcare providers to provide further treatment capacity, and to help care for existing patients with chronic medical conditions.
Private hospitals continue to support the public hospitals in attending to patients with less serious acute clinical conditions. Healthcare institutions have also started teleconsultation services for follow-up on their patients.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) has sought the support of healthcare professionals in the private sector, and encouraged them to join the newly launched SG Healthcare Corps.
Since its launch on 7 April, about 3,000 healthcare professionals across all job groups have signed up. MOH will be expanding the SG Healthcare Corps to include more healthcare professionals, as well as non-healthcare professionals.