The first batch of Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) soldiers received their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine on Jan 14, with plans for most of the SAF to be vaccinated by the middle of this year, the Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said yesterday.
The first phase of the SAF's vaccination programme targets medical and Covid-19 front-line personnel.
It is expected to be completed in six weeks, including the second dose, Mindef said in a Facebook post.
Personnel in critical units - such as those involved in the protection of key installations, sea and air defence, and counter-terrorism - will be next in line, before the rest of the SAF receive their shots.
Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said in the same post that there are plans to get the bulk of the SAF's active forces vaccinated by the middle of this year.
Singapore is ramping up its vaccination programme, with those in the military joining others who have already received the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, such as Home Team officers, nursing home staff, and healthcare and aviation workers.
Dr Ng and Senior Minister of State for Defence Zaqy Mohamad joined 20 SAF personnel to receive the vaccine last week at the Mindef Medical Centre in Bukit Gombak.
The personnel included Chief of Medical Corps, Colonel (Dr) Lo Hong Yee. They will receive their second dose 21 days later.
All active SAF service personnel who are medically eligible to be vaccinated will be able to receive the vaccination, said Mindef.
"Wide vaccination coverage in the SAF will protect our servicemen and women, support the SAF's operational readiness, and enable the wider resumption of training and force generation activities," it said.
Among the first to receive the vaccine was Corporal Talgeri Raviraj Ramchandra, a combat medic from the Jurong Camp medical centre.
The full-time national serviceman, 20, said: "I am grateful to be one of the first SAF personnel to receive the vaccination. It makes me more confident in carrying out my job. I can also (better) protect those around me."