Singapore to stop paying for COVID-19 treatment of patients on short-term visit passes

Singapore's Ministry of Health (MOH) has announced that travellers holding short-term visit passes who seek treatment for Covid-19 in the country will have to pay for their own treatment from last Saturday, March 7.

Testing for the disease will remain free, according to media reports. 

Photo courtesy: Twitter/sporeMOH
Photo courtesy: Twitter/sporeMOH

Earlier this year, MOH said the government of Singapore will be footing the full hospital bills incurred by all Covid-19 patients in public hospitals. However, this coverage did not apply to outpatient treatment at general practitioner clinics or polyclinics, or treatment at private medical centres.

MOH explained on Monday, March 9, that the policy change is due to the need to prioritise the resources at Singapore’s public hospitals. This is in view of the rising number of Covid-19 infections globally and the expected rise in the number of confirmed cases in Singapore, reports said.

In a statement, MOH noted that it will "continue to waive Covid-19 testing fees for all short-term visit passes holders as part of our public health measures to identify and initiate contact tracing for confirmed cases who may have been infectious while in Singapore." 

The Singapore overnment will continue to pay for the Covid-19 testing fees and hospital bills in full for Singapore residents and long-term pass holders who are admitted to public hospitals for Covid-19.