DA Tele-ART: Do your pre-departure and VTL Day 3 & 7 ART testing from home

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No more travelling to clinics or QTCs with DA Tele-ART, which gives you certified ART results at home for less than S$18.

While testing is an acceptable inconvenience for quarantine-free travel, it’s an inconvenience nonetheless. Attending pre-departure and post-arrival swabs takes time out of your schedule, and goodness knows there’s enough to do already. 

But what if all your testing could be done from the comfort of your home? That’s what Doctor Anywhere (DA) is offering with their new Tele-ART service, a godsend for VTL travellers. 

DA Tele-ART service

DA Tele-ART

DA Tele-ART is a pilot programme run in conjunction with the Ministry of Health that allows supervised ARTs to be done at home, over a video call. 

Skip the need to visit a Quick Test Centre or the long trip to a clinic. Complete your supervised self-swab Covid-19 Antigen Rapid Test (ART) over video consultation with Doctor Anywhere.

Results are valid for pre-event and pre-departure tests (if it fulfills on requirements of your destination country) and for individuals returning on VTL flights (for D3/D7 supervised self-swab ART).

-DA website

The Tele-ART service is available daily from 9 a.m to 6 p.m and costs S$12.84 nett, plus the cost of your own HSA-approved ART kit. 

Notarised results will be sent within four hours of consultation, via SMS and email. They will also be updated in your TraceTogether app. 

Tele-ART results are acceptable for pre-departure testing (at least for travel out of Singapore; it’s less clear if it’s acceptable for travel to Singapore), as well as post-arrival Day 3 and Day 7 testing for VTL travellers. 

Pre-departure testing for outbound travel from Singapore

If you’re heading overseas, remember that certain VTL countries require Singapore residents to present negative pre-departure tests before boarding their flight. Here’s a summary of the current requirements: 

⚕️ PDT for Singapore Residents
 Vax.Unvax. Child Under 12^
🇦🇺 Australia
PCR1
PCR1
(under 5 exempt)
🇰🇭 CambodiaPCR2PCR2
🇨🇦 CanadaPCR3
PCR3
(under 5 exempt)
🇩🇰 DenmarkN/AN/A
🇫🇯 FijiPCR4N/A
🇫🇮 Finland ART/PCR4aART/PCR4a
(under 16 exempt)
🇫🇷 FranceART/PCR5N/A
🇩🇪 GermanyN/AN/A
🇮🇳 IndiaPCR6
PCR6
(under 5 exempt)
🇮🇩 IndonesiaPCR7PCR7
🇮🇹 ItalyART/PCR8
ART/PCR8
(under 6 exempt)
🇲🇾 Malaysia ART/PCR9PCR9
(under 2 exempt)
🇲🇻 MaldivesPCR10PCR10
(under 1 exempt)
🇳🇱 NetherlandsART/PCR10aN/A
🇶🇦 QatarPCR11N/A
🇸🇦 Saudi ArabiaPCR12PCR12
(under 9 exempt)
🇰🇷 South KoreaPCR13N/A
(Only children aged 5 and below allowed entry)
🇱🇰 Sri LankaPCR14PCR14
(under 2 exempt)
🇸🇪 SwedenN/AN/A
🇪🇸 SpainN/AN/A
🇨🇭 SwitzerlandART/PCR15N/A
🇹🇭 ThailandPCR16PCR16
(under 6 exempt)
🇹🇷 TurkeyN/AN/A
🇦🇪 UAEPCR17N/A
🇬🇧 United KingdomN/AN/A
🇺🇸 United StatesART/PCR18
ART/PCR18
(under 2 exempt)
^Accompanied by vaccinated parents
1. Within 72h of departure to Australia
2. Within 72h of entry into Cambodia

3. Within 72h of departure of last direct flight to Canada
4. Within 3 days of departure to Fiji
4a. Within 48h of entry into Finland
5. Within 48h of departure to France
6. Within 72h of departure to India
7. Within 72h of departure to Indonesia

8. Within 24h/72h (ART/PCR) of entry into Italy
9. Within 2 days of departure to Malaysia. ART for VTL land only
10. Within 96h of departure to Maldives
10a. Within 24h/48h (ART/PCR) of departure to Netherlands
11. Within 72h of entry into Qatar
12. Within 72h of departure to Saudi Arabia

13. Within 48h of departure to South Korea
14. Within 72h of departure to Sri Lanka
15. Within 24h/72h (ART/PCR) of departure to Switzerland
16. Within 72h of departure to Thailand
17. Within 72h of departure to UAE

18. Within 1 day of departure date to USA

At the moment, you can use ARTs for travel to Finland, France, Italy (although they’re not accepting tourists from Singapore), Malaysia (land VTL only) Netherlands, Switzerland, and the USA. 

Tele-ART allows you to get your results certificate without leaving home, freeing up time for other pre-departure tasks. Your results will also be notarised, which allows land VTL travellers to upload them easily to the MySafeTravel portal for travel to Malaysia. 

The cheapest pre-departure ART I’m aware of is at Northeast Medical, which costs S$21.40. DA Tele-ART beats that at S$17.84 (DA’s fee of S$12.84 plus the ~S$5 cost of an ART kit).

Post-arrival Day 3 and 7 testing

Supervised swabbing at QTC

Singapore recently extended its daily post-arrival COVID-19 testing regime for VTL travellers to 30 January 2022.

In addition to the pre-departure and on-arrival tests, all VTL travellers aged two and above must do daily ARTs from Day 2 to Day 7. 

🇸🇬 Testing Regime for VTL Travel to Singapore
DayTestCost
Within 2 days before departure to SingaporeProfessional ART/PCR Varies
Day 1 (arrival in Singapore)Air VTL: PCR
Land VTL: ART
S$125 (PCR)
S$15 (ART)
Day 2Self-administered ART~S$5
Day 3Supervised ARTS$15
Day 4Self-administered ART~S$5
Day 5Self-administered ART~S$5
Day 6Self-administered ART~S$5
Day 7Supervised ARTS$15
Professional ART= Someone swabs you
Self-administered ART= You swab yourself, unsupervised
Supervised ART= You swab yourself, supervised

While Days 2, 4, 5 and 6 ARTs are self-administered at home with an approved self-test kit, Days 3 and 7 ARTs must be supervised.

How it normally works is that you book an appointment at a designated Combined Test Centre (CTC) or Quick Test Centre (QTC)and head down to do your swab. The swab itself only takes a couple of minutes, but there’s travel time involved, and you might be unlucky and show up when there’s a long queue.

QTC/CTC Locations
Book Appointment
Children aged 3 to 12 must be accompanied by a caregiver aged 21 years old and above for supervised ART swabbing. The caregiver may be required to help administer the test if the child is unable to do so.

Life would be so much easier if you could just do the Day 3 and 7 tests at home, and that’s where Tele-ARTs come in. 

The total cost of a DA Tele-ART (S$17.84) is only marginally more expensive than the S$15 CTC/QTC fee, and you’ll certainly come out on top in terms of time saved. 

What’s the Tele-ART process like?

If you’re curious as to how the Tele-ART works, you can refer to the step by step guide here.

Basically, you’ll need to make an appointment on the DA app, during which you’ll register your own HSA-approved ART kit and provide your personal details. During the appointment, you’ll do the following:

After the appointment, your validated results will be received within four hours. 

If your result is positive, follow the steps below:

Can this be used for pre-departure testing for travel to Singapore?

Arriving at Changi Terminal 3
⚠️ Update: DA has informed me that their Tele-ARTs cannot be used for pre-departure testing for travel into Singapore.

Singapore currently requires all VTL travellers to take a COVID-19 ART or PCR test within 2 days of departure for Singapore. 

It would be fantastic if Tele-ARTs could be used for VTL travellers returning to Singapore. Imagine not having to make a detour to a testing centre downtown, or stand in line at the airport. However, I’d be a bit hesitant about using this, at least until we get further confirmation.

I’m in two minds here. On the one hand, VTL travellers from Malaysia to Singapore are allowed to use tests from CLEA for pre-departure certification (you can read about successful data points in this Telegram group). CLEA is more or less the same as DA Tele-ART; in fact, you could argue their process is slightly less robust as it’s not done live- you record yourself doing the swab and submit it for subsequent verification. But if these are acceptable anyway, why not Tele-ART?

On the other it could be that CLEA is acceptable because the results certificate is issued by a Malaysia clinic, the country where travellers are departing from. On the other hand, DA Tele-ART results will be issued by a Singapore clinic. 

But on yet another hand (yes, I have three hands), I’m not aware of any requirement that your pre-departure test certificate must come from the country you’re flying out of. For example, I know of people who did travelled around Europe and flew home with a test result issued from a different country (e.g. they did their test in France and flew out of Germany). 

To further the ambiguity, the MOH’s website says “we do not accept self-administered PCR tests as pre-departure testing options for entry into Singapore”. You’d think that would also apply to ARTs, but it’s not stated explicitly. 

I’ve contacted DA for clarification, but I suspect I’m going to be bounced to ICA who will give me one of their lovely template replies.

Conclusion

While it’s unclear whether DA Tele-ARTs can be used for travel to Singapore, what’s clear is that it can provide great convenience for your outbound travel, as well as your post-arrival testing on return to Singapore. 

This should really have been introduced ages ago, but better late than never.

Share your experiences with Tele-ART below!

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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anon

I have a feeling this will be a YMMV kinda situation.

Somebody

Not trying to nitpick but blame it on years of slaving for a PhD – Your citation index for US is #18 but the table reference mislabels it as #19. I suppose the row numbers confused you since UK doesn’t have a citation #? 😀

Paul

Great article!

This is a godsend, and definitely a great use of technology to solve a problem.

yogi

Great post. Hoping this can be done pre departure into singapore. That would reduce cost and also potential exposure especially in countries with a lot of covid and poor mask/social distancing.

Yogi

Shouldn’t the company be able to follow up and confirm if can be used for travel into SG? Would be in their interest as they would make more money.

Rebecca

I just checked with DA – they said the service cannot be used for travel INTO SG. Only for testing requirements within SG only, and for people who have already arrived on VTL flights. They said it’s MOH rules.

Yogi

Not so good but Thanks for updating Rebecca.

Ortloc

Many people have to go to work on days 3 and/or 7 and it doesn’t help that most QTCs/CTCs only open at 9am.The 4 hour wait to get an ART test result means you will not be able to leave your home at worst before 1pm and this negates any benefit of at-home testing. Pity they cannot deliver results earlier when the test kits only take 15 minutes.

Boonco

IMO The requirement to test before being able to leave your home only applies to days with self-administered tests (not including day 3/7).

Yes the logic doesn’t make sense but not a lot does these days.

Srini

How does one submit the result of the tele ART for day 3? As of now the links for day 3 and 7 only direct to a testing appointment booking site?

Lifshitz

Yeah I am wondering about this too. @Aaron how do know we don’t run afoul of the rules by doing DrA?

jyf

thanks Aaron for covering this article (ahead of mainstream news!) i just completed my day 3 supervised ART under this pilot prgm, and it was pretty smooth. its def convenient for anyone who just want to do the test at home. – i downloaded app on day 2, booked and paid for my appt for day 3 supervised ART (lots of timeslots to choose) – prepare at least 2 approved ART test kits + NRIC before the appointed timeslot – tele-doctor dial in live on scheduled timeslot, and will guide you through the steps – just need to show yourself… Read more »

jyf

no prob! i dont think need to report again, as its already reflected in trace together + i had a HPB SMS sent to me, quoting my NRIC, that i have been tested negative. the HPB SMS also links to MOH’s website with a negative ART test result. =)

Christian

Thanks for covering this indeed! Just wanted to add my mixed experience with this. My partner and I arrived on VTL and couldn’t find any nearby testing centre slots so this was a godsend. We managed to get an appointment without any issues, did the test on screen (as well described above) and our results were displayed right away in the app. The experience differed after the session ended; the test results didn’t reflect in neither of our TraceTogether apps, nor Health Hub. I received a text and email with a Ministry of Health testing certificate, my partner didn’t. The… Read more »

Tom

Great use of tech. What if you are a family of 4? Can you all do the test at the same time?
Or really need to book 4 slots (and assuming pay 4 times)?

Alanthia

From 22 Feb, the on-arrival PCR test will be replaced with a Supervised self-administered ART done within 24 hours of arrival. Do you know if I can use DA’s Tele-ART for this on-arrival test, instead of going to a Quick Test Centre or combined test centre?

Thank you!

Ho Xu

Very interested to know if this Tele-ART fulfils requirements for entry to Australia.

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