The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission
Public health experts said that it was unlikely that Singapore will tighten COVID-19 rules across the board in response to the recent spike in cases. Prof Dale Fisher, Senior Consultant, Division of Infectious Diseases, National University Hospital, said that tightening measures would be necessary only if a new variant or if a completely new virus surfaced. Prof Teo Yik Ying, Dean of NUS Saw Swee Hock School Public Health, noted that the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron sub variants have been spreading across multiple countries over the past two months, with both North America and Europe seeing a surge in local transmissions.
A/Prof Alex Cook, Vice Dean of Research, NUS Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, mentioned that the increased travel during the June holiday period was not the reason behind the recent increase in COVID-19 cases. He explained that while travel may have brought these sub variants into Singapore, their spread is a result of inherently greater transmissibility and lower effective immunity against them compared with during the first Omicron wave.
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