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COVID-19: What the end of Singapore’s circuit breaker means

From June 2, 2020, Singapore will end circuit breaker measures and move into Phase 1 of the post-circuit breaker period. The announcement has left many wondering what they can and cannot do once the first phase starts. Even though more activities and businesses will gradually be permitted, some restrictions will stay in place during the initial phase. In this Pacific Prime Singapore article, we take a closer look at what the end of Singapore’s circuit breaker means.

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Phase 1 of the post-COVID-19 circuit breaker

While the end of Singapore’s circuit breaker signifies heading towards normalcy, coronavirus prevention measures in Singapore must ease gradually. In this section, we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked regarding the post-circuit breaker period, and provide information on which facilities and services will be reopening.

Can I go back to my office?

If you haven’t been able to go to the office during the COVID-19 circuit breaker period, then you’re probably wondering when you can go back to the office. There is a list of companies that are allowed to operate again from June 2. As long as your company is on the list and your employer has implemented safe management measures, you should be heading back to the office shortly. With that said, telecommuting measures are encouraged where possible.

Can I visit my friends or partner?

You still cannot visit friends or partners who are living in different households. However, you can visit your parents and grandparents if they live somewhere else, along with your parents-in-law and grandparents-in-law.

Does this mean I can travel?

Many people are concerned about overseas travel. The current travel advisors are still in place and Singaporeans should continue to postpone any plans for traveling abroad.

Are sports facilities opening up again?

During Phase 1, sports, outdoor, and recreation facilities will remain closed. This means that fitness studios and gyms are not yet accessible. The good news is that sport facilities will progressively be permitted to reopen in Phase 2.

Can I go to the dentist or see a chiropractor?

From June 2, Singaporeans will have access to various healthcare services. However, patients that have urgent medical needs will receive priority. For hospital-based services, medical procedures, allied health procedures, and specialist outpatient services will resume for patients with higher needs.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) needle acupuncture will be permitted for all conditions. Chiropractic, osteopathic, ayurvedic, and other types of traditional and complementary services for symptom relief and management of medical conditions are allowed as well.

Are places of worship accessible?

From June 2, places of worship with safe distancing measures in place are permitted to have private worship with a maximum of five households at a time. Worshipers can pray individually or as a group if they are from the same household. The only religious ceremonies and rites that are allowed are funeral-related activities and marriage solemnization. Columbariums in places of worship will continue to solely be accessible to families who want to install niches for their loved ones.

Will government services centers reopen?

Government service centers dealing with housing, taxes, and employment passes are scheduled to reopen at the start of Phase 1. However, you’ll need to make an appointment to use their services. Other government service centers will stay closed for now.

Can I swap my face mask for a face shield?

The Ministry of Health guidelines from May 26 state that face masks should be used instead of face shields in most circumstances, even though both provide basic protection. Face shields can be worn in situations where wearing a face mask is impractical and where a safe distance can be maintained. For example, teachers can wear face masks when speaking in front of a class for extended periods.

What measures will be taken when students go back to school?

Many parents are wondering what measures will be put in place when students return to school on June 2. Students in Primary 6 and Secondary 4 and 5, who will return to daily classes, will be required to wear face masks or shields during their lessons. Other students will alternate between classes in school and home-based learning on a weekly basis.

What can you do in Phase 2?

During a COVID-19 multi-ministry task force conference on May 28, Lawrence Wong, Minister of National Development, said that Phase 2 could take place before the end of June. However, the timeline for the shift from Phase 1 to 2 depends on the number of COVID-19 transmissions in the first half of June.

Phase 2 will see the reopening of consumer services, retail shops, and sport facilities such as swimming pools and stadiums. Food outlets will also be allowed to open for dine-in service for up to five people. Similarly, social gatherings with a maximum of five people will be allowed and households may have up to five visitors daily.

Other activities involving large gatherings in enclosed spaces, such as movie theaters, museums, libraries, bars, and clubs will take longer to resume. These businesses may reopen within Phase 2, which still requires everyone to wear a mask outside of their home. MOH advises seniors to continue to stay at home and exercise extra caution.

Get in touch with Pacific Prime

If you’re looking for health insurance in Singapore, Pacific Prime is here to help. As a reputable insurance broker, we can help you find the ideal plan for your needs and budget. Contact us to receive a free plan comparison for private health insurance in Singapore or a free quote today.

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