US CDC classifies S'pore as 'Very High Level of Covid-19', advises people to avoid travelling here

The U.S. CDC had earlier reclassified its travel advisory alert for Singapore to "unknown".

Faris Alfiq | February 01, 2022, 04:19 PM

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On Jan. 31, the United States' Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has advised its citizens to avoid travelling to Singapore.

The U.S. CDC also classified Singapore's Travel Health Notice as "Level 4: Very High Level of Covid-19".

According to Reuters, other than Singapore, the U.S. has also advised its citizens to avoid travelling to Brazil, Ecuador, Kosovo, the Philippines, and Paraguay, in the agency's latest update.

Mothership has reached out to the Ministry of Health (MOH) for comment.

Nearly 130 countries in Level 4 list

Reuters reported that the U.S. CDC listed nearly 130 countries on Level 4 classification.

One of the indicators that the U.S. CDC used in determining the travel health notice level is the country's incidence rate.

Level four would mean that there are more than 500 new cases over the past 28 days per 100,000 population.

Previously classified Singapore as "unknown"

Earlier, the U.S. CDC had reclassified its travel advisory alert for Singapore on Jan. 4 to "unknown".

It also suggested that travel to Singapore should be avoided.

The advisory said, "Because the current situation in Singapore is unknown, even fully vaccinated travellers may be at risk for getting and spreading Covid-19 variants."

In response, health minister Ong Ye Kung shared during a press conference on Jan. 5 that MOH was engaging the U.S. embassy and will provide necessary Covid-19 data to the U.S. CDC.

"To be clear: we know our situation very well," he added.

Ong shared that the positive rates for over 150,000 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests administered every week is just under two per cent.

Additionally, only a "very small handful" of wastewater testing stations across the island are registering the presence of Covid-19 viral fragments.

"So we are sure that the incidence of Covid-19 in our community is currently low and stable," said Ong at the time.

On Jan. 6, the U.S. CDC said that it will update its Travel Health Notice for Singapore accordingly.

Situation in Singapore

On Jan. 21, Ong announced that Singapore would record a higher number of cases after deciding to include the number of Protocol 2 cases in its daily updates.

Protocol 2 refers to individuals who are well, or assessed by a doctor to have a mild condition. Previously, these people were not included in the daily case numbers.

As of Jan. 31, there are 759 people with Covid who are hospitalised, with 64 requiring oxygen supplementation and 10 in the Intensive Care Unit.

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