Advisory Note on COVID-19 Virus: Precautions and Steps Taken by Equinet
Update as of 12 Mar 2020
MOH has updated us that the case on the 27-28 Feb has been deemed low risk.
We are unable to divulge sensitive personal details of our attendees. However, according to our sources, the attendee was only symptomatic about a week after the course.
As a precautionary measure nonetheless, we have thoroughly disinfected the entire premises through an NEA-registered disinfection vendor, isolated all personnel from the affected class, and stepped up on other safety measures including:
- Thoroughly disinfected the entire premises through a NEA-registered disinfection vendor
- Isolated all personnel from the affected class for 14 days from the incident
- Hand Sanitizers provided at each table and pantry
- Increased spacing between tables
- Replaced communal water dispenser and food with individual food packaging and bottled water
- Moved temperature taking station outside of the premises
Several persons from the affected dates also tested and reported negative results for the COVID-19 virus. As of now, there are no further confirmed cases of the COVID-19 associated with our training centre.
We will continue to monitor the situation and step up our measures to provide a peace of mind to anyone who comes through our doors.
In the meantime, we urge everyone to minimise physical contact such as handshakes, be socially responsible and stay at home if you are feeling unwell, and regularly sanitize your hands with the hand sanitisers provided at each table and the pantry.
Update as of 9 Mar 2020
We have just received news from MOH on Sunday afternoon, 8th March 2020, at 2:57pm, that an attendee who had attended the Content Marketing Strategy course last month on the 27 and 28 February 2020 had just tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. However, MOH has informed us that no further action would be required on our part and business may resume as per normal. We have provided MOH with the contacts of everyone present during the two days, so that they may carry out their contact tracing protocols. To the best of our knowledge, the attendees of the affected class were screened before entry and were not found to be symptomatic. It is still uncertain whether the attendee contracted the virus before, during, or after attending the course, as there have been no other signs of a spread happening within our training centre.
In response to this, we have implemented the following measures in place with immediate effect, in addition to the current in-house safety measures outlined in the next section below:
- Complete and thorough disinfection of the entire premises by an NEA-registered disinfection vendor, which took place on the morning of 9th of March.
- Isolation of persons who were present in the Content Marketing Strategy class or had close contact, for 14 days from the affected period.
- Stepping up of safety protocols:
- More temperature screening, masks supply, and sanitiser stations
- Supplying of bottled water to avoid potential cross contamination of water dispensers
- Individual packaging of food for tea breaks
- Increased spacing between classroom tables
In-house safety measures for trainer and trainees
Declaration of Travel History
In view of the surge in the number of confirmed cases around the world, Equinet Academy will put in place further precautionary measures to include the affected regions into our Travel Declaration requirement.
Trainees and staffs who had been to any of the travel restricted areas (as advised by MOH) in the past 14 days will be required to reschedule class/work-from-home to monitor their health conditions closely and seek medical attention promptly if they are unwell.
- Attendees are to declare while signing in if they have visited Mainland China within the past 14 days.
- Attendees who have been to Mainland China in the past 14 days will be asked to return home to rest. Their seat will be rescheduled to a later date.
- Attendees who have been to Republic of Korea in the past 14 days will be asked to return home to rest. Their seat will be rescheduled to a later date. (updated on 4 Mar 2020)
- Attendees who have been to Iran in the past 14 days will be asked to return home to rest. Their seat will be rescheduled to a later date. (added on 4 Mar 2020)
- Attendees who have been to Northern Italy in the past 14 days will be asked to return home to rest. Their seat will be rescheduled to a later date. (added on 4 Mar 2020)
Regular and Thorough Disinfection of Training Premises
- Regular disinfection of surface areas within classrooms learners frequently come into contact with i.e. tables, markers, whiteboards at least twice a day (once during lunch break).
- Regular disinfection of premises including pantry area and door handles.
- All attendees including trainer will have their temperature inspected at the reception hall before lesson.
- Students with a fever will immediately be asked to return home to rest. Their seat will be rescheduled to a later date.
- Colour coded stickers will be issued to all attendees. Stickers are to be pasted on upper shirt/dress at all times. If misplaced, student should proceed to the front desk to obtain a replacement sticker.
- Blue stickers will indicate that the student is generally well with no symptoms of flu (runny nose, stuffy nose, cough etc)
- Yellow stickers will indicate that the student should wear a surgical mask at all times. Attendees with yellow stickers will also need to have their temperature taken again after lunch.
- Before class starts, Trainer should inform attendees to check each other to ensure that everyone has a sticker on their shirts
- Emphasis should be placed that trainees may proceed to the registration counter at any time to have to their temperature taken if they are feeling unwell.
- Attendees who are feeling unwell may proceed to the front desk to request for a surgical mask/N95 mask (depending on availability). The student will be issued a yellow sticker and will be required to don the mask during training.
Hand Sanitiser Dispenser
- All attendees are encouraged to regularly use the hand sanitisers located at the reception hall and pantry area, especially before eating.
Enhanced Rescheduling Policy
- To do our part to contain the outbreak, attendees are allowed to reschedule at any time if they are feeling unwell.
Update from Ministry of Health
Recent travellers from Hubei province with higher risks has and will be quarantined by the government, as stated here on the website of the Ministry of Health (MOH):
Recent Travellers From Hubei already in Singapore:
1. As the Taskforce announced yesterday, the Ministry of Health (MOH) is contacting all recent travellers from Hubei province who are in Singapore. MOH estimates that about 2,000 such persons have arrived here in the last two weeks, of whom roughly 1,000 are on short-term visas.
2. MOH will assess who among this group are at higher risk and will place them under quarantine.
– Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents and foreigners on long-term visas will be quarantined at home or other suitable facilities.
– Those on short-term visas will be housed at Government Quarantine Facilities.
Masks necessary only for those with respiratory symptoms, stresses chief of Singapore’s infectious diseases centre
Singapore raises DORSCON level to Orange
In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, Equinet Academy has taken steps to mitigate the spread of the virus here at our training centre. Business will resume as usual. However, precautionary steps will be put in place with the support of both Equinet employees and learners:
Since the official announcement on the new DORSCON status, Equinet’s management team has stepped up on the precautionary measures and tightened the procedures in efforts to avoid disruption and provide a safe and comfortable learning environment for our learners and employees.
This includes, regularly disinfecting surface areas learners frequently come into contact with i.e. tables, markers, whiteboards at least twice a day.
Clarifications On Misinformation by MOH
28 Feb 2020: MOH is aware of a rumour circulating on social media that a foreign domestic worker had passed away from COVID-19 in Singapore. This is not true. She was tested for COVID-19 and found to be negative. As of 4pm on 28 Feb 2020, there has been no fatality related to COVID-19 in Singapore.
7 Feb 2020: There has been a message circulating of a death in Singapore due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. This is false. As of 2pm, 7 Feb, there are no deaths due to the 2019-nCoV in Singapore.
7 Feb 2020: A fake screengrab of a CNA tweet was circulated widely on social media saying that all schools including polytechnics and universities are to close next Monday (10 Feb) due to the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak. This is untrue. The image, which is being circulated on messaging app WhatsApp, appears to have been a doctored screengrab of another tweet sent out by CNA.
MOH advises members of the public to not speculate and/or spread unfounded rumours. Click here for past clarifications.
Advisory on wearing masks
If you’ve been travelling, monitor your health closely for two weeks upon return to Singapore and seek medical attention promptly if you feel unwell. You should inform your doctor of your travel history.
If you have a fever or respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough, shortness of breath), you should wear a mask and call the clinic ahead of the visit.
Wearing of masks
Here are 5 essential steps to wearing a mask the right way.
Together we can fight this. Let us all stay strong, stay vigilant, and stay safe.