[UPDATED on Tuesday, May 4 at 7:10pm: In a press conference today, the Multi-Ministry Taskforce (MTF) on Covid-19 announced that implementation of TraceTogether-only SafeEntry will be brought forward to May 17, 2021.
To help ease the transition, scanning of barcodes on personal IDs will be retained until May 31, 2021.
End of update.]
Starting from Jun. 1, 2021, venues such as shopping malls, workplaces, places of worship, schools, and educational institutions will be implementing TraceTogether-only SafeEntry.
This means that SafeEntry must be performed using the TraceTogether (TT) app or token.
Other modes of SafeEntry check-in, such as using the phone's camera to scan a venue's QR code, using the Singpass App, and scanning of barcodes on personal IDs, will be discontinued.
Implemented nationwide starting Jun. 1
In a joint press release by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and SmartNation on Thursday (Apr. 22), the government announced that more than 90 per cent of the population has either downloaded the TraceTogether app or collected the TraceTogether Token.
From Jun. 1, TraceTogether-only SafeEntry will be implemented nationwide at all venues that experience higher throughput of visitors, and/ or where people are likely to be in close proximity for prolonged periods.
These also include dine-in food and beverage outlets and gyms.
The full list of TraceTogether-only SafeEntry venues can be found on the SafeEntry website.
SafeEntry check-in must thereafter be performed using the TraceTogether app or token in one of three ways:
- Using the app to scan the venue's QR code.
- Displaying the token so that a venue staff can scan the tokens' QR code.
- Tapping the app or token at a SafeEntry Gateway device.
No need to SafeEntry check-in at large retail stores & supermarkets within malls
With this new implementation of TraceTogether-only SafeEntry, the existing requirement for SafeEntry check-ins at large retail stores and supermarkets located inside a mall will be removed.
The press release said that this is because all visitors would have already performed TraceTogether-only SafeEntry check-in at the mall entrances, and the interactions at these venues within the malls are generally more transient.
Small retail stores, such as pharmacies, convenience stores and heartland provision shops, that were not previously required to implement SafeEntry for customers but have voluntarily done so, should also remove their SafeEntry check-ins to increase convenience for their patrons.
Updating TraceTogether app & token battery replacement
The government encourages all TraceTogether app users to ensure that their app is updated to the latest version, turn on their Bluetooth, and keep the app active in the background.
Those using the token are asked to ensure that their token has not run out of battery and to always have the token with them when they leave home.
Token users can check if their token is working by looking for a green light that blinks about once every minute. If the token is blinking red or if there is no light at all, users should replace their token at any Community Club/Centre (CC), or at token replacement booths set up at selected malls.
Those who have not collected the Token can also do so at any CC islandwide. More information can be found on the TokenGoWhere website.
TraceTogether & SafeEntry help reduce contact tracing time
In the Apr. 22 press release, the government said that the combined use of TraceTogether and SafeEntry has helped to reduce the average time taken for contact tracing from four days to less than one-and-a-half days.
TraceTogether data helps to identify an initial list of close contacts, while SafeEntry data provides the list of places visited by Covid-19 cases helps MOH contact tracers establish cluster links.
TraceTogether has recently helped to identify 75 people who had to be placed under quarantine, but who would likely not have been picked up through a manual contact tracing process.
"This has been important in ensuring that the impact of any local cases detected were immediately contained, with very little further spread in the community," the government said.
"With greater active usage of TT, the coverage and speed of contact tracing can be further enhanced. This will be most important in venues or settings where community spread is most likely to occur."
Top photo via Smart Nation Singapore & Ashley Tan.