Singapore

Free mouth gargle for S’pore households from Temasek Foundation

Singapore households can register their interest in collecting a bottle of StayWell mouth gargle from Nov 15, said Temasek Foundation yesterday.

The povidone-iodine (PVP-I) gargle, which kills germs that cause sore throat, will be distributed under the foundation's Stay Prepared initiative, which aims to reduce the spread of illnesses.

Interested households can register at stayprepared.sg/staywell-register to collect a 250ml bottle of the gargle and a 25ml measuring cup. The registration period is from Nov 15 to Dec 10.

Registered households can also collect the gargle at their preferred collection points from Nov 22 to Dec 12, subject to availability.

Should demand exceed expectation, a second round of self-collection may take place after the Chinese New Year period next February, said Temasek Foundation.

Separately, from next Monday to Nov 19, a 125ml bottle of gargle will be delivered to the letter boxes of all one- to four-room Housing Board flats.

No action is required from eligible households.

Residents may gargle two to four times a day when they feel a sore throat is about to develop, or for general oral hygiene.

This latest initiative by Temasek Foundation follows its distributions of masks, hand sanitiser and oximeters over the past 18 months.

The PVP-I gargle, a fast-acting brown liquid against pathogens, is formulated for gargling and should not be swallowed.

Temasek Foundation cautioned that there are PVP-I liquid disinfectants available on the market that are used to disinfect wounds or skin surfaces. These should not be used as gargles as they may contain other disinfectants or have higher concentrations of PVP-I.

Evidence from multiple studies has shown that PVP-I can interrupt the attachment of Sars-CoV-2 - the virus that causes Covid-19 - to oral and nasopharyngeal tissues, and lower the amount of viral particles in saliva and respiratory droplets. - THE STRAITS TIMES

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