Mandatory Covid-19 test underway for 85 paradisiacs at Bukit Merah View

SINGAPORE: Mandatory testing of the Covid-19 began at 10 a.m. Monday (June 14) for about 85 paradisiacs at block 116 Bukit Merah View.

For this, a temporary site has been created in block 125A.

Although free trials are also offered to residents and members of the public who visited the 115 Bukit Merah View Market and Food Center or the 116 Bukit Merah View stores between May 25 and June 12. , this is not required.

Tests for them are also not done on block 125A, but they can visit the Bukit Merah polyclinic and several other Swab-and-Send-Home clinics nearby, which can perform swab tests for patients.

Residents can go to this website and enter their zip code to find the nearest clinic.

Some residents who went to block 125A were unhappy when they retired.

Tanjong Pagar GRC MP Joan Pereira, who spoke to reporters near the swab test site, said: “Many residents have actually contacted me, sharing with me that they expected the tests of swab could be performed in an area close to them, without having to travel very far. “

He has submitted an application to the Ministry of Health (MOH) to ask if the site could also be open to residents.

“It’s really very convenient for them and if MOH gives their approval. I think most of our residents will really appreciate it.”

The Straits Times understands that arrangements are being made as of this Tuesday (June 15).

Wang Da Feng, 70, made the trip to the temporary test site Monday morning with his 71-year-old wife, but the two were sidelined.

The retiree living in Telok Blangah Crescent said the couple is worried about potentially having Covid-19 while visiting the market and the walking center every day.

“We both felt a little bad and my wife started coughing last night, so we wanted to get tested.” She said.

“Today is a lost journey, but it’s okay, we’ll just be back tomorrow,” he added.

A resident in Bukit Merah who only wanted to be known as Mrs Lim, 60, said she had visited the market on Sunday for about 20 minutes.

Cleaning in progress on block 116 Bukit Merah View. The 182 stalls there were closed from Sunday for cleaning until Tuesday. ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

“I don’t care about having Covid-19. I feel good, I have no symptoms, but testing would give me some security because my job requires me to visit clients,” said Ms. Lim, who works in accounting.

Mr. Chia Foo Keng, 65, who lives on block 117 Bukit Merah View, said he worries about getting Covid-19 while visiting the market on block 115 every day.

“I’m completely vaccinated, but I feel it’s better to get tested because who knows if I have Covid-19 or not?” said Mr. Chia, who is a fishmonger at an Ang Mo Kio market.

Tanjong Pagar GRC MP Joan Pereira told ST that there are residents who are worried as there is a confirmed cluster in the market and the Blk 115 walking center, which they frequent for daily food and groceries.

“This is especially important as there are a lot of seniors living in the area and their children have also written to me because they are worried,” Ms Pereira said.

“I have asked them to continue to monitor their health closely and consult a doctor immediately if they feel ill, and to minimize physical interactions.”

MOH also offers them free trials, which can be done at nearby Swab-and-Send-Home clinics, he added.

Tests in Bukit Merah follow MOH’s announcement on Sunday that a new cluster was formed at 115 Market and Food Center in Bukit Merah View.

The 182 stalls there were closed from Sunday for cleaning until Tuesday.

All staff and tenants who had been working in the market since May 25 have already been quarantined and will be passed the sheet during quarantine.

However, MOH had said that all staff and tenants who had been working on the upcoming 116 Bukit Merah View as of May 25 will also be tested for Covid-19, “to disrupt any wider community transmission and without detect “.

Most of those who were tested at the temporary site said they are not worried about getting Covid-19.

Ms. Theresa Neo, 52, who works in a nail salon on block 116, said she only worked there a few months before the cluster was detected on Sunday.

“I am completely vaccinated, so I am not worried,” he said, adding that the salon would remain open as no closure had been instructed.

A food establishment on block 116 who wanted to be known only as Mr. Than, 50, said he received an SMS informing him that the test should be done.

Mr. Than, who sells porridge from Teochew, came out of the temporary test site with teary eyes, but said it was a painless process.

“It simply came to our notice then. There is nothing to worry about. I don’t care about getting Covid-19, ”he said.

He said he would go back to work and added, “We have to make money, what do we do?”

The 115 Bukit Merah View Market and Food Center cluster now has six cases, after four cases were linked to it on Sunday.

Five of the cases detected so far are food stall vendors or workers at various stores in the market and the food center. Their ages range from the 60s to the 80s.

Affected paradisiacs can take advantage of MOH’s quarantine order award scheme, which provides assistance in the form of an ex-gratia payment of $ 100 a day to the self-employed.

The plan aims to provide financial assistance to the affected self-employed people, to employers whose employees have been assigned to a Quarantine Order or by order of the Ministry of Health to cease operations until their premises are decontaminated.

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