New MOM unit to take over Covid-19 deployment from regional health clusters, provide support to migrant workers

Workers having their faces scanned on their return to Sungei Tengah Lodge after work on Aug 5, 2020.
Workers having their faces scanned on their return to Sungei Tengah Lodge after work on Aug 5, 2020.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The regional health clusters, such as the National Healthcare Group and SingHealth, will phase out their deployment at the dormitories with a new division under the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) to take over.

The move comes as all dormitories were declared clear of Covid-19 on Aug 19.

To be fully operational by Oct 1, the new Assurance, Care and Engagement (Ace) Group will implement a network of 12 on-site medical centres and sectoral medical centres to continue to provide access to medical services.

The inter-agency task force will hand over its operations to the new division in phases over this month and the next to ensure a smooth transition, said the MOM on Saturday (Aug 22).

This includes taking over the deployment of Forward Assurance and Support Teams at all purpose-built dormitories, factory converted dormitories, construction temporary quarters and private residential premises.

"With the completion of dormitory clearance, the Ace Group's immediate focus is to continue with the efforts to enable our dormitories to be more resilient and prevent new public health threats to our migrant worker population," the ministry said.

Besides medical care, the MOM said the group will also "enhance engagement with workers and other stakeholders to foster stronger partnerships with Singaporeans, workers' groups, employers and dormitory operators".

The ministry on Saturday thanked officers who were seconded from various government agencies to the inter-agency task force for their support and assistance in the fight against Covid-19 at the dormitories.

The task force was formed in April to offer support to migrant workers and dormitory operators amid the pandemic.