Tan Tock Seng Hospital to resume admissions from May 18

Six rounds of testing for all TTSH inpatients and two rounds for all 12,000 staff on campus have been completed. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) will resume admissions from Tuesday (May 18), two weeks after it stopped admitting patients due to a Covid-19 cluster.

The hospital said in a press release on Monday night (May 17) that six rounds of testing for all inpatients and two rounds for all 12,000 staff on campus have been completed, and the swabbing results have consistently returned negative.

The hospital said: "This gives us added assurance that the containment measures are tight, and our processes have been in place across the hospital. As we progressively reopen our hospital, we will continue to monitor the situation closely and stay vigilant and strengthen our defences."

Admissions will resume from 8am on Tuesday, with the Singapore Civil Defence Force taking urgent ambulance cases to the hospital's Emergency Department from 8am to 8pm daily. The hospital will also see to urgent clinic appointments and electives during this period.

The hospital said it will take a three-pronged approach to ensure that patients and staff are protected.

All patients who are admitted will be swabbed on admission, on a regular schedule during their stay, and prior to their discharge. All inpatients will also don surgical masks if they are able to wear one based on their medical condition.

Inpatients who develop acute respiratory infection (ARI) symptoms will also be tested.

Visitor restriction will continue to be in place, said TTSH.

For the next two weeks, the hospital will allow one pre-registered visitor per patient, with a limit of one visit per day of up to 30 minutes.

Visitors are to be masked at all times, and will have to refrain from eating and drinking during their visit to the wards.

Patients who have been in hospital during the last two weeks and are medically fit, with consistent negative test results, will be discharged and placed on either stay-home notice or quarantine order.

All staff will also undergo routine rostered testing (RRT) at regular intervals, with an ARI clinic set up for staff on campus.

The progressive reopening of the hospital will be phased with the return of staff who have been serving their quarantine or leave of absence.

Disinfection at the hospital has also been ramped up, with other measures to enhance the ventilation of the general wards, such as the addition of exhaust fans, being considered.

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The hospital said that the last few weeks have not been easy for its staff, patients and their families, and thanked the public for their support and goodwill.

Dr Eugene Soh, chief executive of TTSH, said: "As we safely and progressively reopen our hospital, we will pivot our pandemic response to the increasing cases in the community... As we turn the corner, we must continue to stay vigilant, monitor the situation and look after one another in staying the fight against Covid-19."

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