SINGAPORE: Various allied health services such as counselling, podiatry and social work will be re-classified as essential with effect from Wednesday (Apr 29), the Ministry of Health (MOH) said on Tuesday.
Previously, only healthcare services that, if not provided, would result in significant or rapid deterioration of a patient’s medical condition and potentially threaten their health and well-being, had been classed as essential and allowed to operate under Singapore’s “circuit breaker” period.
READ: COVID-19 circuit breaker extended until Jun 1 as Singapore aims to bring down community cases ‘decisively’: PM Lee
Initially scheduled to end on May 4, the elevated safe distancing measures under the circuit breaker period have been extended until Jun 1.
In light of the extension, the health ministry has “re-categorised” various previously non-essential allied health services outside of public healthcare institutions as essential services too, said an MOH spokesperson.
These include rehabilitation or therapy services and other allied health services such as dietetics, counselling, social work, psychology and podiatry.
Restrictions will be in place to make sure overall movement and interactions are kept to a minimum, said the spokesperson.
This includes keeping therapy to one-on-one sessions and prioritising face-to-face consultations for patients whose condition could significantly or rapidly deteriorate, potentially threatening their health and well-being, if they do not receive the therapy or treatment.
Most outpatient allied health services can be delivered through tele-consultation, added MOH, urging providers to use this method where possible.
All allied health professionals must continue to comply with safe distancing, crowd management and personal protective equipment measures.
Published at Tue, 28 Apr 2020 09:12:42 +0000