Forum: Is weekly swab test for NSmen needed?

NSmen from 791 SIR undergoing IBOS training.
NSmen from 791 SIR undergoing IBOS training.ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

The Ministry of Defence requires some operationally ready national servicemen (NSmen) to undergo Covid-19 tests from this month if safe-distancing cannot be practised during in-camp training (ICT).

My spouse, who is a doctor, was called up for a two-week-long ICT commencing early last week.

During the course of his ICT, he is required to perform activities that are similar to his routine work, which involves seeing patients.

He was required to undergo a swab test one day prior to commencing his ICT, and another test one week after.

Given that the incubation period of the coronavirus can be up to 14 days, I question the need to take up unnecessary time and resources to do a swab test at the one-week mark.

Healthcare workers who are at the forefront of delivering patient care are not required to be swabbed on a weekly basis.

Faustina Chay

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 28, 2020, with the headline 'Is weekly swab test for NSmen needed?'. Subscribe