22 JANUARY 2020
In view of the novel coronavirus situation in Wuhan and other parts of China, the Ministry of Health (MOH) advises travellers to avoid non-essential travel to Wuhan. MOH also reminds the public to continue to exercise caution and attention to personal hygiene when travelling to the rest of China.
2. Travellers should adopt the following precautions at all times:
· Avoid contact with live animals including poultry and birds, and consumption of raw and undercooked meats;
· Avoid crowded places and close contact with people who are unwell or showing symptoms of illness;
· Observe good personal hygiene;
· Practise frequent hand washing with soap (e.g. before handling food or eating, after going to toilet, or when hands are dirtied by respiratory secretions after coughing or sneezing);
· Wear a mask if you have respiratory symptoms such as a cough or runny nose;
· Cover your mouth with a tissue paper when coughing or sneezing, and dispose the soiled tissue paper in the rubbish bin immediately; and
· Seek medical attention promptly if you are feeling unwell.
3. All travellers should monitor their health closely for 2 weeks upon return to Singapore and seek medical attention promptly if they feel unwell, and also inform their doctor of their travel history. If they have a fever or respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough, runny nose), they should wear a mask and call the clinic ahead of the visit.
4. Given the evolving situation and ongoing investigations in China, Singapore residents who need to travel to the affected areas are advised to regularly check MOH’s website (www.moh.gov.sg) for updates. Travellers to China are also advised to stay vigilant, monitor developments and heed the advice of the local Chinese authorities while in China.
5. MOH has put in place precautionary measures to reduce the risk of importation of the virus to Singapore. The definition of suspect cases from 22 January 2020 include persons with:
(i) pneumonia and travel history to China within 14 days before onset of symptoms; or
(ii) acute respiratory infection who had been to any hospital in China, within 14 days before onset of symptoms.
These cases will be isolated in hospital as a precautionary measure to prevent transmission.
6. From 22 January 2020, temperature screening at Changi Airport has also been expanded to all inbound travellers on flights arriving from China, and suspect cases meeting the expanded definition above will be referred to hospitals for further assessment. Health Advisory Notices are issued to all travellers arriving at Changi Airport from China, and health advisory posters are displayed at land and sea checkpoints.
7. MOH has also reminded doctors and healthcare workers to be vigilant, and maintain strict infection control and prevention measures.
8. To date, there have been no confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus reported in Singapore. However, given the high volume of international travel to Singapore, we expect to see more suspect cases, and imported cases. Once a case is confirmed, contact tracing will be initiated, and we will implement strict isolation, quarantine, and infection control and prevention measures to prevent further transmission.