These patients and their household members will be required to remain in their place of residence. The patients will also be closely monitored for their health and safety during this time and will be provided with access to 24/7 telemedicine services.
Starting 30 August 2021 (Monday), Singapore will be piloting a home isolation model for fully-vaccinated COVID-19 patients with no severe symptoms.
In a press release on Thursday (19 August), the Multi-Ministry Taskforce said: "Our high vaccination rates also enable us to review our treatment and care model for COVID-19 patients. With much more local and global data showing that fully vaccinated COVID-19 patients have a much lower risk of developing severe disease, we are piloting a home-centric care model for the management of COVID-19 patients with mild or no symptoms, thus requiring minimal supportive care. However, they need to have a suitable home setting, where they can be isolated from the rest of their household."
This initiative will begin "in a risk-calibrated, phased manner."
- Patients and their household members must both be fully vaccinated and must not belong to any vulnerable groups, such as the elderly or immunocompromised. This is in line with the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the best practices of other developed countries, the MTF stated.
- These patients will spend the first few days in a medical facility, before moving to home isolation. By then, the viral loads of vaccinated patients would have dropped.
- During home isolation, the patients and their household members are required to remain in their place of residence, and this will be tracked through electronic monitoring and surveillance checks through phone calls.
- The patients will be closely monitored for their health and safety during this time, and will be provided with access to 24/7 telemedicine services.
- Patients will also be subject to a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) swab on the ninth day of illness to determine if they could be discharged from isolation, provided their swab result is negative or if they carry a very low viral load.
- All household members will need to be fully-vaccinated, come under home quarantine, and also be placed on a daily Antigen Rapid Test (ART) testing regimen for early detection of potential infection.
The MTF noted: "We will closely monitor the pilot’s outcomes, and study if more patients may benefit from this mode of recovery in a safe manner."
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