Letter of the week: Time to get rid of vaccination-differentiated safe management measures?

The reopening of Marquee, the biggest nightclub in Singapore, at Marina Bay Sands on July 1, 2022. PHOTO: ST FILE

For gatherings of more than 500 people, vaccination-differentiated safe management measures remain in place. And individuals have to be fully vaccinated to dine at food and beverage establishments.

Many small group activities, however, also do not allow the unvaccinated to participate.

For example, some Chinatown heritage walks, limited to 15 people, require participants to be fully vaccinated. These walks are conducted in the open, where the ventilation is better than in the air-conditioned environment of museums, for instance.

Yet museum visitors do not have to show their vaccination status. They can join a tour - with masks off - in an indoors setting.

At events attended by more than 500 people, the safe management measures allow only the fully vaccinated, those who have recovered from Covid-19 in the past 180 days, those who are certified to be medically ineligible to be vaccinated, and children under 12.

But many self-isolate at home if the infection is mild and do not see a doctor. They have no record of their recovery.

Also, should medically ineligible individuals be accorded the same privileges as the vaccinated? Those ineligible for vaccination usually have some underlying health issues and are perhaps more vulnerable in a crowd.

Those 12 and below, who are now encouraged to get vaccinated, are also allowed to participate in crowded events where chances of getting infected are high.

The rules for vaccination-differentiated measures are quite puzzling, and it may be time to do away with them now that we're treating Covid-19 as endemic.

Jillian Woon Sook Yin

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