President Halimah pays virtual visit to nursing home
Since Monday, Ms Tijam Stephanie May Gonzales has had to stay in a hotel as a precautionary step.
The 31-year-old Filipina works as a staff nurse at the Singapore Christian Home, a facility in Sembawang Crescent that caters to mostly long-term residents of varying ages from low-income families.
The Government had announced earlier this month that staff in residential care homes for the elderly, who interact with residents, will need to stay in on-site facilities or move to hotels until the circuit breaker is lifted.
All staff and residents have to be tested for Covid-19 as well.
Ms Stephanie said besides providing transport, the home pays for her three daily meals.
She told President Halimah Yacob, who paid the Singapore Christian Home a virtual visit yesterday, that she has been well taken care of.
Besides the care staff, Madam Halimah also chatted with the residents, to understand how they are coping amid the outbreak.
They told her they have been in touch with their families through regular phone and video calls.
Residents and staff members spoke to Madam Halimah from several rooms set up for video-conferencing.
Speaking later to the media, which had observed the visit, Madam Halimah said the existing circuit breaker measures are necessary to protect the seniors.
"I also understand how our seniors feel. At that age, our seniors would really love to have their families around them, to talk to," she said.
"I wanted to see how they are coping because the psychological part is also very important. It looks like they are doing well and in pretty high spirits."
She added that the care staff have put in tremendous effort for the residents and sacrificed time with their own families by staying in alternative accommodations.