Singapore to Deny Entry to Non-Vaccinated Foreign Travellers

In a statement released by the Ministry of Health (MoH) last June 26, unvaccinated travellers will soon be disallowed to enter Singapore. According to MoH, the proposed change is in accordance with international standards (where health and travel insurance are part of the basic requirements), and the entry/travel protocol is also covered in the proposed amendments to the MOH’s Infectious Disease Act (IDA).

The proposed change shall be “exercised judiciously, in scenarios where it is impractical to offer vaccination, surveillance, or isolation” according to the MoH.

MoH: Unvaccinated Foreigners Will Soon Be Refused Entry to SG

The current provision of the IDA requires all foreign travellers coming into Singapore to present vaccination records against a specific set of infectious illnesses. Also, travellers who have not been completely vaccinated against such illnesses may be subjected to vaccination upon entry, isolation, or surveillance within the country whereas those who refuse to comply shall be sent back to their place of embarkation.

Upon passing of the proposed changes to the IDA, authorities at entry points will hold the legal right to turn way unvaccinated foreigners without offering them vaccination, isolation, or surveillance.

The MoH also clarified that, ill travellers entering Singapore shall not be denied entry and access to medical care and attention in the country. Furthermore, the MoH had announced that it will hold a six-week public consultation period in regard to the proposed changes to the IDA.

Other notable changes proposed include allowing the ministry more flexibility in terms of conducting “risk-calibrated surveillance remotely (i.e., via phone calls, text messaging, and/or video conferences).”

Currently, the IDA authorizes the MoH to require cases, contacts, or carriers of infectious diseases to undergo surveillance that is typically conducted in person. With the approval of the proposed change to the IDA, those who are considered as “low-risk contacts” of infectious cases shall no longer be required to present themselves physically at a specific time and location for testing.

Furthermore, the MOH is studying the possibility of organizing a risk-stratified approach in managing the care of individuals with different levels of public health risk.