Coronavirus Vaccination

Elder-friendly community vaccination centres have larger booths for wheelchairs

Both centres will also have chairs with armrests, express lanes for the less mobile

Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing speaking with a resident booking his time slot for the Covid-19 vaccination at the community vaccination centre in Tanjong Pagar Community Club yesterday. Volunteers also help the elderly in arranging for th
Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing speaking with a resident booking his time slot for the Covid-19 vaccination at the community vaccination centre in Tanjong Pagar Community Club yesterday. Volunteers also help the elderly in arranging for their vaccinations, and will remind the residents about their appointments on the day itself or a day before.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
Elder-friendly features include bigger booths to accommodate wheelchairs, compared with the booths at other vaccination centres such as those in Changi Airport Terminal 4 and Raffles City Convention Centre.
Elder-friendly features include bigger booths to accommodate wheelchairs, compared with the booths at other vaccination centres such as those in Changi Airport Terminal 4 and Raffles City Convention Centre.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
A nurse diluting the Covid-19 vaccine in a trial run yesterday. Seniors are prioritised in the vaccination campaign, with Tanjong Pagar and Ang Mo Kio as the pilot sites.
A nurse diluting the Covid-19 vaccine in a trial run yesterday. Seniors are prioritised in the vaccination campaign, with Tanjong Pagar and Ang Mo Kio as the pilot sites. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
Volunteers waiting to get the Covid-19 vaccine in a trial run yesterday. Details like the seating arrangements while awaiting the jab have been carefully planned.
Volunteers waiting to get the Covid-19 vaccine in a trial run yesterday. Details like the seating arrangements while awaiting the jab have been carefully planned. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

The first two community vaccination centres in Singapore differ slightly from others, such as in Changi Airport Terminal 4 and Raffles City Convention Centre, as they cater to elderly residents.

Seniors have been prioritised in the nationwide campaign, and Tanjong Pagar and Ang Mo Kio were selected as the pilot sites, as there are larger numbers of them residing in those towns.

The centres' elder-friendly features include bigger booths to accommodate wheelchairs, and chairs with armrests, said Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing at the Tanjong Pagar Community Club yesterday.

"There's an express lane for people who are not so mobile, who come in wheelchairs, so that they don't have to wait too long," he said.

He added that the size of the booths in which the vaccine doses are administered are also slightly bigger than the ones at existing facilities, such as at the airport, so that people in wheelchairs can move in and out without obstruction.

Details had been thought through, right down to the seating arrangements while awaiting the jab and the 30-minute observation period afterwards, said Mr Chan.

"If you notice, the chairs that are being selected for them provide greater stability and assistance to the elderly, when they are in the waiting area."

Volunteers also provide assistance specially to the seniors, in helping them arrange for their vaccinations.

They first get in touch with the elderly residents by going door to door at the housing blocks.

They will then remind the residents about their appointments on the day itself or a day before.

Around three weeks later, the volunteers will also try to remind the elderly to go for their second vaccination dose.

  • The process

  • Two community vaccination centres begin operations today, in the latest phase of Singapore's Covid-19 vaccination drive.

    The two venues, at Teck Ghee Community Club in Ang Mo Kio and Tanjong Pagar Community Club, will cater to elderly residents aged 70 and above, and can give jabs to 2,000 residents daily.

    This is how the process works:

    Step 1: Booking your appointment 

    Elderly residents who require help in booking their appointments can head to the community clubs where volunteers will help you with the process. You must bring along your NRIC.

    Step 2: Vaccination day 

    Head to the venue with your vaccination card and NRIC. After answering a few questions about your medical history, you will be directed to a waiting area.

    Step 3: At the vaccination booth 

    A medical professional will administer the vaccine. Roll up your sleeve, and after an alcohol swab is rubbed on your arm, you will be given the injection.

    Step 4: 30-minute observation period 

    You will then proceed to wait in an observation area for 30 minutes to see whether any negative reaction occurs.

    Some soreness in the arm is to be expected, but if you get a rash or a headache, or experience dizziness, you will be taken to a nursing station to be treated by a doctor.

    Step 5: Remember the second jab 

    At the final counter, you will be asked further questions about how you are feeling. If all is well, you will be allocated a second appointment, around three weeks later. It takes two jabs for the vaccine to be fully effective.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 27, 2021, with the headline 'Elder-friendly community vaccination centres have larger booths for wheelchairs'. Subscribe