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'Sooner or later, many of us will end up catching' COVID: Lawrence Wong

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SINGAPORE – Many people in Singapore will end up catching COVID-19, and there is no need to be fearful or embarrassed about it, said COVID multi-ministry taskforce (MTF) co-chair Lawrence Wong. 

In a virtual press conference on Saturday (2 October), the Finance Minister said that "sooner or later, many of us will end up catching the virus, but we will have zero or mild symptoms (and) recover from home after a few days". Ninety-eight per cent, Wong said, of the cases in Singapore will experience zero or mild symptoms.

However, about two per cent will fall seriously ill, and have to be taken care of in hospital. Two per cent, Wong said, may seem small but "two per cent of a large number of people who are infected is quite a sizeable group". 

Wong reiterated that the government is taking this time – while certain restrictions are in place – "to stabilise all our protocols, make sure the procedures are in place and build up the necessary capacity (in the healthcare system)".  

On Friday, Singapore reported a record high 2,909 new cases and eight more deaths due to COVID. 

Wong reiterated at the conference that Singapore is committed to its reopening plans and to be a COVID-resilient nation.

Addressing a group he said is calling for lockdown or further tightening of measures amidst the rising cases, Wong said "we have gone beyond that point" and are no longer focusing solely on headline numbers. 

As for another group who is calling for the government to continue opening up, Wong said, "Please be patient. Our overall strategy to reopening has not changed."

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