S'pore government to foot hospital bills for all suspected & confirmed Wuhan virus cases locally

Because it is an emerging virus.

Mandy How | January 31, 2020, 12:40 AM

The Singapore government will be footing hospital bills for all suspected and confirmed novel coronavirus cases locally.

This was first revealed at at press conference held by the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Jan. 28.

MOH told Mothership that this will be extended to all patients, regardless if they are locals or tourists, owing to the nature of the Wuhan virus as an emerging disease.

13 cases so far

The first case was confirmed by MOH on Jan. 23, 2020.

By Jan. 30, there are a total of 13 confirmed cases.

All patients are Chinese nationals who have flown in from Wuhan.

A total of 164 suspect cases have tested negative for the Wuhan coronavirus, while test results for 49 cases are pending.

There is currently no evidence of community spread.

Free masks for Singapore households

In another press conference on Jan. 30, MOH announced that it will be distributing 5.2 million masks to 1.37 million Singapore households.

Each household will receive four surgical masks for free.

With consumers stockpiling the masks, however, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong has warned that the rate of consumption is unsustainable.

Senior Minister of State for Health Lam Pin Min previously said that there would be enough masks for the population if they were used "sensibly and responsibly".

He also urged Singaporeans to refrain from hoarding masks unnecessarily.

Top image by Zhangxin Zheng