COVID-19: Singapore, Malaysia to set protocols for sending back symptomatic travellers

A trickle of traffic seen along the Causeway linking Malaysia and Singapore on 18 March 2020, the first day of Malaysia's two-week border lockdown. (PHOTO: Dhany Osman / Yahoo News Singapore)

SINGAPORE — Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Singapore and Malaysia will be implementing protocols to send back symptomatic travellers from the respective countries who are detected at the other country’s entry points.

Under the Singapore-Malaysia Joint Working Group (JWG), both countries have also agreed to continue entry screenings and set the same temperature cut-off – of above 37.5 deg C – for febrile travellers, said Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH) in a news release on Wednesday (25 March).

The move comes as a result of the the JWG’s second meeting, via video conference, on Tuesday. It was co-chaired by Dr Lam Pin Min, Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Transport and Health, and Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali, Malaysia’s Deputy Minister for Health.

“At the meeting, both countries updated on the COVID-19 situations in their respective countries, shared existing temperature screening procedures at land and sea checkpoints, and discussed a set of protocols for the transfer of symptomatic travellers detected at entry screening back across the land and sea checkpoints between Singapore and Malaysia,” said MOH.

The JWG also acknowledged the formation of the Singapore–Malaysia Special Working Committee (SWC) on COVID-19 to discuss the safe and sustainable movement of people, goods and services between the countries amid Malaysia’s Movement Control Order.

“The JWG agreed to continue health discussions specific to these matters separately under the SWC,” said MOH. A third JWG meeting is scheduled for next month.

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