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Transitionary Medical Support for Migrant Workers
11 August 2020
By 11 August 2020, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) had successfully cleared all dormitories nationwide. To continue ensuring that the dormitories remain well supported with medical services to prevent and manage any future outbreaks, ASPRI’s Government Advocacy Work Group, together with the Ministry of Health (MOH) and MOM, organised a Zoom webinar to share MOH’s medium-term medical support plans for migrant workers. The session was attended by around 90 members.
Mr Melvin Tan, Vice-President of ASPRI’s 13th Executive Council and Lead of ASPRI’s Government Advocacy Work Group highlighted the importance of preparedness in his opening address. He said that the nation, collectively, should always be ready in case of another wave of outbreak, emphasising the importance of medical support for workers that were residing in dormitories.
Dr Lam Meng Chon, Director (Medical) of MOM, spoke in detail about the transitionary medical support plan. He said it was to ensure workers continue to get necessary medical support and to press on with active public health surveillance to detect and manage new or potential COVID-19 clusters as early as possible.
The plan consisted of two facets – Government-funded and non-Government funded. The Government-funded plan had a three-pronged medical initiative.
- Baseline and after-hours telemedicine support in the form of the FWMOMCare mobile app.
- Setting up an onsite medical centre in each of the five largest Purpose-Built Dormitories (PBDs) and seven sectoral medical centres in locations island- wide.
- Mobile clinical teams would be activated by the Government in the event of emerging clusters, as part of the response against public health threats.
The non-Government-funded aspect of the plan pertains to medical treatments. Employers may choose to bring their employees residing in the community to General Practitioner (GP) clinics, Public Health Preparedness Clinics (PHPCs) or Polyclinics for medical attention, at their own expense.
Following Dr Lam’s presentation, members had the opportunity to clarify their doubts and seek the insights of an industry expert regarding COVID-19. The engaging Q&A segment saw over 20 questions addressed by Dr Lam. The webinar then came to a close with a cheerful screen-shot session.