Back in January, Singapore announced eased measures for recently-recovered, fully-vaccinated travellers. For a 90-day period, this group will be exempt from all testing and SHN requirements when returning to Singapore, upon presentation of positive test result or recovery memo.
In other words:
- No pre-departure testing before travel to Singapore
- No on-arrival or post-arrival testing in Singapore
- No SHN, regardless of travel history and whether or not a VTL flight is taken
While that’s a welcome development, it’s unfortunately created some unintended consequences. Since it pays to get your COVID-19 infection documented, mildly ill or asymptomatic patients who should be recovering at home have been flooding GP clinics to get certified.
Fortunately, common sense has prevailed and it’s now possible for such patients to visit Quick Test Centres or Combined Test Centres (QTC/CTCs), take a supervised ART, and have their HealthHub records updated.
Booking a QTC/CTC confirmatory test
Members of the public who have a positive ART result (known as AG+) may now make an appointment and visit a QTC/CTC to do a confirmatory swab.
Members of the public who test positive for COVID-19 infection on their self-administered Antigen Rapid Tests (ARTs) and are asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic, may make appointments at the Combined Test Centres (CTCs) and Quick Test Centres for a government-funded supervised self-swab ART test. Test statuses of all individuals will be recorded in the COVID-19 management system
Swabs will be free of charge from 16 February to 15 March 2022 (subject to further extension), and results will be recorded on the HealthHub app within 30 minutes. 48 QTC/CTCs will initially be available for booking, increasing to 205 by the end of this week.
Appointments are required, and can be made for all individuals aged three and above. Minors aged 3-12 must be accompanied by a caregiver, aged 21 and above. The caregiver may be required to help administer the self-swab test if the minor is unable to do so.
|❓ Getting to the QTC/CTC|
|If you’re COVID-positive, you obviously shouldn’t be taking public transport or a regular taxi/PHV. This means that walking or driving are the two main options, although GrabSHN is also possible.|
What document do I need to be excused from SHN and testing?
Fully-vaccinated travellers who have recently recovered from COVID-19 may present either of the following documents to excuse themselves from SHN and testing requirements:
- a positive COVID-19 PCR or professionally-administered ART result dated between 7-90 days before date of departure to Singapore, or
- a discharge memo (aka recovery memo)
Either document must:
- state the traveller’s name and at least one other personal identifier (e.g. date of birth, passport number)
- state the date of infection or discharge date, which must be within 7-90 days before the date of departure for Singapore
- be issued by a relevant state authority or licensed medical professional
QTC/CTCs will not issue recovery memos as they are not required by employees and students to return to work or school.
Note: Some people have reported that they weren’t issued such a certificate at their QTC/CTC. It may only be given by certain clinics, so you might want to call before you head down.
Alternatively, you can always request for a recovery memo once you’re in the system, via this link. The link says it’s for Protocol 1, but it reportedly also works for Protocol 2 patients whose infection is recorded in the system
However, they can issue a professionally-administered ART result. A MileLion reader contributed the following example:
|❓ Are QTC/CTC swabs “professionally administered”?|
|I’m sure it’ll be asked, so I’ll just preempt the question: even though you’re technically swabbing yourself, it still counts as a professionally administered ART because you’ve done it under supervision.|
Notice how it features the full name, NRIC and the date of infection. This is all the information required to exempt yourself from testing and SHN. The exemption period, assuming you’re fully vaccinated, is 7-90 days after the date of infection.
On arrival in Singapore, you’ll see a special lane at immigration called “Vaccinated Recovered Travellers”. Approach the counter, and you’ll be issued a white sticker with “E” on it. This exempts you from the on-arrival test, and once you leave the secure area you’re free to go wherever you wish, just like pre-COVID days.
If you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 on a self-administered ART kit, you can now book an appointment at a QTC/CTC to get it certified.
This provides you with a document that exempts you from pre-departure, on-arrival and post-arrival testing in Singapore, as well as any prevailing SHN requirement, for a period of 7-90 days after the date of infection.
Do remember that you may still need to take pre-departure tests when travelling out of Singapore, because those regulations are set by other countries. For a full list of VTL pre-departure testing requirements, as well as the cheapest places to do a test, refer to this post.