COVID-19 vaccine: 3 in Singapore received payouts for death or permanent disability

MOH said there are 413 applicants who were given payouts under the Vaccine Injury Financial Assistance Programme

A woman receives a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Mount Elizabeth Hospital.
A woman receives a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Mount Elizabeth Hospital. (PHOTO: Roslan Rahman/AFP via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — Three out of the 413 people who received payouts under the Vaccine Injury Financial Assistance Programme (VIFAP) as of 31 December last year received the Tier 1 payout of $225,000.

Under this tier, the payout is extended to those who have died or become permanently disabled following administration of a COVID-19 vaccine.

According to a media statement from the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Wednesday (25 January), a total of $1,895,000 has been paid out or offered to applicants. The 413 applicants are up from 296 applicants reported at the end of 2021.

Those who require admission to high dependency or intensive care, with subsequent recovery, will receive $10,000 under Tier 2. Those who require inpatient hospitalisation, with subsequent recovery will get $2,000 under Tier 3.

VIFAP provides “one-time goodwill financial assistance” to those who experience serious side effects related to COVID-19 vaccines. Those eligible must be Singapore citizens, permanent residents or long-term pass holders who were vaccinated under the national COVID-19 vaccination programme.

They must also have subsequently experienced a serious side effect that either required inpatient hospitalisation, caused persistent incapacity or disability, or was fatal. The side effect must be assessed by a doctor to be related to the patient's COVID vaccination.

Nurse who suffered severe reaction to vaccine 'yet to apply'

CNA reported MOH saying that a nurse from Singapore General Hospital (SGH), who suffered a severe adverse reaction to her second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in March 2021, has yet to apply for VIFAP.

Earlier this month, the nurse had won an appeal against a court order to contribute $1,500 for the monthly maintenance of her children post-divorce.

In the High Court ruling, it was stated that the nurse was hospitalised for 151 days following her severe adverse reaction to her COVID vaccine. She was diagnosed with Involuntary Movement Disorder, leaving her wheelchair-bound and requiring constant intubation with an oxygen tank.

She was also unable to resume her job as a nurse at SGH.

MOH has replied to CNA's queries, saying that it has reached out to the nurse to check if she would like to submit an application. Meanwhile, SGH said last week that the nurse was welcome to reapply to join the hospital “when she is better”.

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