Ho Ching: 'Slow down' social interactions, especially where masks are down

Ho said: "Just tahan for another two to four weeks."

Fiona Tan | September 08, 2021, 10:47 AM

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Ho Ching, Chief Executive Officer of Temasek Holdings, urged the public in a Facebook post on Sep. 7 to slow down their social gatherings, especially in settings where masks are not worn.

Limit social gatherings

Ho's post came after the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced a restriction of social gathering and interactions at workplaces on Sep. 6.

The new restriction kicks in today, Sep. 8.

Ho expanded on her point in a later Facebook post on Sep. 7, where she specified that social gatherings should be limited to a maximum of two per week.

She added: "Just tahan (Bahasa for endure) for another two to four weeks."

This, according to Ho, is part of a "tango" of loosening and tightening measures to seek the right balance between the measures in place, and the number of Covid-19 cases within the community.

Ho: Three to four weeks to see impact

While there are hidden cases infected with Covid-19 within the community, Ho said the number of Covid-19 community cases will not go up immediately.

She equated this to a "laggy system", where the effects will only be seen after some time.

In light of this, Ho said that the number of Covid-19 community cases will only increase one to two weeks later.

This is because of silent carriers, who unknowingly transfer the virus to others, within the community.

This, coupled with the Delta variant, speeds up the rate of transmissions within the community.

As such, Ho said that it would take between 13 to 14 days before the trend of community cases reflect the measures in response to curb the spread of Covid-19.

This is the same restriction that MOH has encouraged all individuals to reduce their non-essential social activities at a media doorstop on Sep. 6.

Ho went on and said that the measure of Covid-19's local impact includes the number of people with severe illnesses that require oxygen support in Intensive Care Units (ICU).

As Covid-19 becomes endemic, the focus will be shifting away from the number of daily Covid-19 cases and towards the number of cases in ICU instead.

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Top image from Temasek website and from @christianchen/Unsplash