Relaxed rules for social gatherings suspended in face of COVID-19 surge: Singapore MOH

Singaporeans having a beer session at a local hawker center. Photo: Galen Crout
Singaporeans having a beer session at a local hawker center. Photo: Galen Crout

Singapore’s Ministry of Health today announced that it will postpone further easing of COVID-19 restrictions due to the current stress on hospitals.

The ministry said this after calling on the public to do its part in easing the pressure on hospitals in a week that saw confirmed cases surge above 20,000 cases two days in a row.

It puts a halt to relaxed rules governing social gatherings that were due to happen tomorrow and next week, including allowing unlimited social calls by groups of up to five, and doing away with social distancing for those wearing masks.

A new date for the changes, meant to streamline restrictions for easier compliance, will be announced “shortly,” the ministry said.

Though only 1,587 people are currently hospitalized, many public hospitals have been closing in on capacity. Two-hundred patients are on ventilators; 46 are in intensive care.

The ministry pleaded Tuesday for the public to stay out of hospital emergency departments if not in serious condition. It said health care workers were under “severe pressure.” It repeated the advisory this morning on its socials.

In total, Singapore has recorded 642,605 infections and 963 deaths to date.

RELATED – Singapore pleads with public to ease ‘severe pressure’ on health care workers

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