When the WHO declared the H1N1 a pandemic on 11 June 2009, Singapore adopted a containment strategy in order to prevent new cases from being imported into Singapore. This is what we are all experiencing now with strict procedures to identify passengers coming in from overseas and sending them on an extended holiday in Pasir Ris.
However, despite the measures that have been put in place, the H1N1 still managed to spread within our community. Since there is no point in trying to contain the spread anymore, Singapore will soon move into the "mitigation" phase. This essentially means that since the virus is already among us, we will try to minimise the number of people getting the disease and the number of deaths.
We are not yet in the "mitigation" phase. But when that happens, what that will mean for you is that when you come to the clinic. Our doctor will examine you and if you show symptoms consistent with H1N1, then you will be given one week MC to recover at home. You will no longer be required to be taken by ambulance to Pasir Ris and we will do blood tests only in severely ill patients. Tamiflu will only be given to severely ill patients.
Currently we are in the "Transition" phase. That means that when you come to the clinic, our staff will separate those patients with influenza like illness. You will be given a mask and asked to sit outside the clinic. This is essential to prevent cross infection. Patients suspected to have H1N1 infection will be issued MC for 7 days to recover at home. High risk patients like pregnant women, immuno-suppressed persons and renal dialysis patients will be referred to see their specialists.
So when you visit the clinic, please be socially responsible and ask for a mask if you are coughing and please let our staff know if you have flu like symptoms. If you have a fever, we will require you to be seated outside as a measure to prevent cross infection.