The MOH will be setting up new community care facilities to provide clinical care to COVID-19 patients who are generally clinically well but have underlying conditions that require closer monitoring of their disease course. These are those who are stable and have mild symptoms.
This will help to augment our hospital capacity so that only those who actually need close and specialised medical attention (such as oxygen supplementation and intensive care) will receive their medical care in hospitals.
Stepped-Up Community Care Facility (CCF)
This new category of CCF will provide more comprehensive medical coverage to care and manage elderly patients who are stable, mildly symptomatic, clinically well but with some underlying chronic illnesses or comorbidities (e.g. cardiac, neurological or respiratory diseases, or weakened immune response) that could make them more susceptible to a potential worsening of illness.
“While this specific group of elderly patients are not at a high risk of deterioration to the extent of requiring oxygen supplementation or care in the intensive care unit (ICU), they will require closer monitoring of their pre-existing medical conditions as well as for any early signs of clinical deterioration. For the low percentage of those who do see a deterioration, they will immediately be sent back to our hospitals for further management,” MOH said.
These facilities will be adequately resourced with more medical and nursing manpower, as well as medical monitoring devices to ensure the optimal level of care for these patients.
Suitable COVID-19 patients from nursing homes will also be prioritised for admission, to mitigate potential further spread within residential long-term care facilities should cases be detected among their residents.
First Stepped-UP CCF at NTUC Health Nursing Home
The NTUC Health Nursing Home (Tampines) at 1 Tampines Ave Street 22 will be repurposed as the first Stepped-Up Community Care Facility. It will have 250 beds and will be operational on 23 September 2021. The existing residents in the home will be transferred to other NTUC Health Nursing Home branches.
Some existing CCFs will also be enhanced to operate part of their capacity as Stepped-Up Community Care Facilities. This includes the CCF at [email protected] which is operated by Raffles Medical Group. It will provide a total of 50 such beds when fully operational on 24 September 2021.