Residents invited to get jabs ahead of schedule
All who are eligible can now get second dose within four weeks
The vaccination drive is gathering momentum, and residents have been invited to take their jabs ahead of schedule.
All eligible individuals can now get their second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine within four weeks of the first, down from the six-to eight-week interval flagged earlier.
Residents who are not Singaporeans - permanent residents and long-term pass holders aged between 12 and 39 - will also be able to get their first jab two days ahead of schedule.
Singapore has declared that it will be able to resume more activities and treat Covid-19 as endemic, once enough people have been vaccinated.
The move to shorten the interval between the first and second doses took effect yesterday.
"All eligible individuals who make their vaccination appointments from June 29 will be able to schedule their first and second dose appointments four weeks apart," said the Ministry of Health (MOH).
"Individuals who have already received their first doses and with second dose appointments currently scheduled six to eight weeks later, can also rebook and bring forward their second dose appointments to four weeks from their first dose appointments."
MOH had extended the interval between vaccine doses on May 18 to maximise first dose coverage. It had planned to review the interval around mid-July but has fast-tracked the move as more supplies become available.
The accelerated vaccination drive will enable the nation to boost its economy, as the risk of severe illness and transmission gets reduced.
"Vaccination remains a key enabler in our fight against Covid-19, and its ability to help Singapore reopen safely can be felt only when we can collectively achieve a high level of population coverage for vaccination," said MOH.
It added that about 60 per cent of the population - nearly 3.3 million people - had already received at least their first dose of the vaccine, while 2.1 million in this group had completed the full vaccine regimen.
Those who want to check if they can change the date of their second dose can do so by using the same personalised booking link in the SMS that they had earlier received.
Dr Leong Hoe Nam, an infectious diseases specialist from the Rophi Clinic at Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre, said it is important to complete the two Covid-19 vaccine doses as quickly as possible, given that there is a risk of falling sick between them .
He noted that studies have shown that completing one dose of the two-dose vaccine regime would afford 30 per cent protection against the Delta variant of the coronavirus, as compared with the 88 per cent afforded by completing both doses.
Among those who brought their appointments forward was undergraduate Valerie Ong, 20, who will take her second jab today instead of on July 11.
She is due to fly to the United States on July 18 for her studies and wanted time to recover from potential side effects caused by the jab.