Seniors in S'pore urged to stay home for next 4 weeks to protect themselves against Covid-19

To reduce their risk of being infected, AIC reminded seniors to go out only for essential activities and avoid crowded places.
To reduce their risk of being infected, AIC reminded seniors to go out only for essential activities and avoid crowded places.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - All seniors aged 60 and above, and those living with them are strongly urged to stay at home as the Covid-19 situation stabilises in Singapore, especially if they are unvaccinated.

The recent rise in Covid-19 cases has seen more seniors experiencing severe symptoms when infected, the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) said in a statement on Thursday (Sept 30).

"Seniors are at a higher risk of developing serious health complications if they are infected with Covid-19 and should take added precautions to protect themselves," it said.

To reduce their risk of being infected, the agency reminded seniors to go out only for essential activities and avoid crowded places. In the next four weeks, they should minimise group activities and social gatherings, it added.

The agency also encouraged seniors to minimise mask-off activities such as eating at hawker centres, and opt to take away food instead.

"Seniors should wear a surgical-grade mask properly at all times and maintain good hygiene practices such as frequent hand washing.

"To minimise their exposure to other infections, we also urge seniors to visit hospitals only if necessary," the AIC said.

If they are infected with Covid-19 and have mild or no symptoms, seniors need not rush to hospital. They should self-isolate at home, the AIC advised.

It said: "More than a quarter of the local cases in the past two weeks were aged 60 years and above.

"From May 2021, there were 257 unvaccinated seniors who were severely affected by Covid-19 and were in ICU, needed oxygen supplementation or died."

It encouraged unvaccinated seniors to get their shots as soon as possible as the risk of an unvaccinated person getting severely ill is almost seven times higher.

Vaccinated seniors are urged to take their booster shots.

"They will greatly benefit from this added protection to mitigate against waning immunity and help reduce the likelihood of severe illness if infected," said the AIC.

"This will position them well for transition to endemic Covid-19."

The agency added that its outreach arm, the Silver Generation Office (SGO), provides support to help seniors get vaccinated.

It can help them make online vaccination bookings and arrange for seniors with mobility issues to be escorted to vaccination centres.

"For home-bound seniors requesting home vaccination, AIC works with the relevant agencies to arrange for the eligible senior to be vaccinated at home."

Seniors who need support in getting vaccinated can contact the AIC Hotline on 1800-650-6060 or their nearest SGO office.