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For the past few months, patients presenting to GP clinics with acute respiratory infection symptoms have had to undergo the COVID-19 PCR swabs. In light of the unfolding cluster cases in various areas, the Ministry of Health has come up with new guidelines with regards to the handling of patients with acute respiratory infections (ARI).
Based on the new MOH guidelines, as of 15 May 2021, patients presenting with ARI symptoms have to undergo both a Antigen Rapid Test swab and a PCR swab. The Antigen Rapid Test swab takes about 15-20 minutes for us to get a positive or negative result, however, it is less accurate than that of a PCR swab test result, hence the PCR swab test will still have to be done. The PCR swab test result will take about 24-48 hours to be released. The reason why MOH has taken the step to have 2 swabs done is to help with early detection and identification of positive cases so that we can take early action in isolating these cases to prevent community transmission.
Patients who go through both the ART and PCR swabs will be given 2-3 days of MC/SHN, and they can de-isolate themselves after their PCR results are out. Patients who choose to go through the PCR swab test only will be given 5 days MC/SHN and can de-isolate themselves once their PCR swab test comes back negative. However, those who choose to only do the ART swab test will be given 5 days MC/SHN and will have to finish serving the whole SHN before they can de-isolate themselves.
Similar as before, patients who visit Intemedical with ARI symptoms will only have to pay $5 or $10 co-payment as part of the SASH and FSS schemes, for their visit and swabs, as the government will be subsidizing and covering the bulk of the payment for your GP visit.
If you have any queries or for further information on the new swab scheme, please contact us at the following touchpoints.
How to make an appointment with Intemedical?
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WhatsApp: 8879 9404
(available during clinic opening hours, 8am to 12am)
Mobile: 8879 9404
Landline: +65 3165 9251
(please be aware that the phone might be engaged due to high call volume)