Covid-19: Lawrence Wong warns SG now on ‘knife’s edge’, community cases can go either way in coming weeks

Lawrence Wong wearing a suit and tie sitting in a chair © The Independent Singapore Lawrence Wong wearing a suit and tie sitting in a chair © The Independent Singapore

Singapore—Striking a sober note in Parliament on Tuesday afternoon (May 11), Education Minister Lawrence Wong conveyed that Singapore is now at a crucial point with regard to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I think it’s very important for us to understand that we are now on the knife’s edge and our community cases can go either way in the next few weeks,” he said.

He admitted that Singapore has “a chance of getting things under control by the end of the month”, but underlined that “as we know from experience, it only takes one lapse, or one irresponsible action, for an infection to spread.”

And this one infection, he added, could end up becoming a super spreader event in the community that ends up infecting many others.

He urged the public to do their part and work from home and stay home as much as possible, and desist from social activities for the time being, despite upcoming holidays this month.

Mr Wong co-chairs the multi-ministry task force assigned to tackle the pandemic, along with Health Minister Gan Kim Yong.

Mr Gan also spoke in Parliament on Tuesday (May 11) afternoon, providing an update on the vaccination effort in Singapore. 

As of last Sunday (May 9), around 1.8 million people have received at least their first Covid-19 vaccine shot and 1.2 million are fully vaccinated.

Mr Gan said that Singapore has made “steady progress” in its vaccination roll-out. Two-thirds of the people aged 45 and above have already received their shots or booked their vaccination appointments.

But Mr Gan added that more people, especially seniors, need to get their vaccine shots. 

“However, we need to continue to encourage more to be vaccinated – especially among the seniors – as given their age, they are the most vulnerable. I urge all of us to encourage our elderly family members too,” CNA quotes him as saying.

He added that as long as the supply of the vaccines arrives according to schedule, the whole programme will be done by year’s end, with vaccinations to be progressively extended in smaller age bands from the later part of May.

About younger Singaporeans getting Covid-19 vaccinations as well, he said that this is currently being studied. 

“The Health Sciences Authority has been examining the supplemental data that have since been submitted for the Pfizer vaccine, to assess if the vaccine meets safety and efficacy requirements for authorisation under PSAR for use in adolescents aged 12 to 15 years. HSA will also do so for (the) Moderna vaccine when data is submitted to them. We will share more details when ready.”

As for the Sinovac vaccine from China, Mr Gan said it is still being evaluated for use in the country.

/TISG

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Covid-19: Lawrence Wong warns SG now on ‘knife’s edge’, community cases can go either way in coming weeks