Singapore to give financial aid to people affected by vaccine

Ameya Karve January 29 | Updated on January 29, 2021

Singapore will grant financial assistance to people who suffer serious side effects related to the Covid-19 vaccine in a bid to boost confidence among those being inoculated.

More than 113,000 people have received their first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine as of Jan. 27, the city-state’s health ministry said in a statement. Over 50 individuals have received the second dose and completed the full vaccination regimen.

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Financial Aid Details

An individual will receive a one-time pay-out of as much as S$10,000 ($7,517) in case of hospitalisation, needing care in high dependency or intensive care unit, but subsequently recovers from “medically significant serious” side effects.

A person will receive S$225,000 in case of death or permanent severe disability as a result of the Covid-19 vaccination. People who have serious side effects after the jabs can also continue to get support through applicable healthcare plans.

The health ministry has appointed an independent clinical panel comprising experts in relevant fields such as neurology, immunology and infectious diseases, to assess applications for financial assistance.

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Allergic Reactions

The South-East Asian country reported three cases of anaphylaxis — or rapid onset of severe allergic reactions — that were treated by healthcare professionals.

The people, in their 20s and 30s, developed symptoms such as rash, breathlessness, lip swelling, throat tightness and giddiness, according to the health ministry statement. They had a history of allergies, including allergic rhinitis and food allergy to shellfish; but none had anaphylaxis previously.

All the individuals have recovered and were discharged from the hospital after a day’s observation or treatment.

The incidence rate of anaphylaxis locally is currently about 2.7 per 100,000 doses administered, the ministry said.

“Anaphylaxis is a known but rare side effect of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine,” the ministry’s Director of Medical Services Kenneth Mak said. He added that the country has in place precautionary measures such as pre-vaccination screening and post-vaccination observation to ensure the program can be carried out safely.

The city-state recorded 432 “adverse event reports” as of January 27, according to the statement. These symptoms are reactions typically associated with all vaccinations and they generally resolved on their own within a few days, the ministry said.

Published on January 29, 2021

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