SINGAPORE - About 3,300 staff, residents and clients of various homes, shelters and centres will be tested for Covid-19 by July 1, Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee announced on Monday (June 29).
These include people from voluntary children's homes, crisis shelters and children's disability homes.
Staff engaged in community services for people with disabilities, such as sheltered workshops, day activity centres and special student care centres, are also being tested.
Mr Lee said in a Facebook post that the tests are being done as part of expanded community testing efforts during phase two of Singapore's reopening after the circuit breaker.
The Ministry of Health had already announced on June 25 that Singapore's testing capacity would be ramped up as the economy reopens and more people are out and about.
As part of expanded testing, more people will be swabbed for Covid-19 infection, including those 13 and above who are diagnosed with acute respiratory infection and front-line staff interacting with travellers.
More regional screening centres are being set up to meet the anticipated increase in the number of people being tested.
On Monday, Mr Lee also announced that the Ministry of Social and Family Development will conduct fortnightly tests on all staff and residents of facilities serving seniors from July onwards to monitor their health.
The tests will complement other measures in place to check the spread of the disease, including the mandatory wearing of masks in the homes and facilities, regular temperature and health checks, and frequent washing of hands and cleaning of high-touch areas.
Mr Lee also said that previous tests of staff and residents of facilities serving the elderly had returned negative.
He said: "We are staying vigilant... I'd like to thank the staff, residents and clients of our facilities for undertaking these tests as we work together towards a new Covid-safe normal."