Various precautionary measures have been implemented to protect Singaporeans and contain the spread of COVID-19.
One of these is the Quarantine Order (QO) – which differs from the Stay-Home Notice (SHN). More on the SHN here.
A QO is issued to quarantine, or isolate an individual who is, or is suspected to be, a carrier of an infectious disease, or a contact of a person confirmed to have an infectious disease.
This is with the aim of limiting the spread of the virus in the community.
A QO is a legal order issued to individuals under the Infectious Diseases Act. It has legal force with severe penalties for non-compliance.
QOs are issued to:
Quarantine usually occurs in the home but can also be served in dedicated Government Quarantine Facilities (GQFs) or hospitals, should the individual not have suitable accommodation in Singapore.
What must I do when I am being quarantined? How will it affect my household members?
Those under quarantine are not supposed to come into contact with others in order to avoid the possibility of the spread of virus through person-to-person contact.
Hence, those under quarantine will need to be isolated from and cannot physically interact with others living in the same premises. A home quarantine package with basic necessities will be provided to individuals who have been quarantined.
You should also monitor your temperature and report your health status at least 3 times a day, and inform your QO Agent if you feel unwell or need any assistance.
Should your household members display symptoms associated with the virus, they will need to be taken to a hospital and treated as suspect cases.
How will those who are under quarantine orders at home be monitored?
Individuals under quarantine will be monitored by video calls at least three times a day.
Spot checks will be carried out to ensure that they strictly adhere to the conditions under the QO during the period specified.
If they are found to be non-compliant, the Director of Medical Services may require them to wear an electronic tag or order that they be detained and isolated in a hospital or in any other suitable place. It is an offence if they do not comply with the conditions listed in accordance with the QO.
If I need to go out to attend to urgent matters, what should I do? What will happen if I break quarantine?
Persons under quarantine must not leave their designated location for any reason.
Should they require assistance for daily needs beyond what is provided for under the home quarantine package, they should arrange with their relatives/ friends to purchase groceries and assist in their daily needs whenever necessary.
If they urgently need to leave their place of isolation / their home for matters needing personal attention which cannot be postponed, they must first seek the permission of the QO Agent.
Spot checks will be carried out to ensure that they strictly adhere to the conditions under the Isolation / Quarantine Order during the period specified. If they are found to be non-compliant, the Director of Medical Services may require them to wear an electronic tag or order that they be detained and isolated in a hospital or in any other suitable place. It is an offence if they do not comply with the conditions listed in accordance with the QO.
I have been in recent contact with someone who has been issued a QO. What should I do?
Persons issued with a Quarantine Order are individuals assessed to have had close contact with a confirmed case, and they are generally well and have no symptoms.
We would advise you to monitor your health closely. If you have fever, cough or runny nose, wear a mask and seek medical attention promptly. Call the clinic ahead of your visit and inform the doctor of your symptoms as well as your travel history, if any.
I heard that people who are served a QO will receive $100 a day under the Quarantine Order Allowance (QOA). Is that true?
The Quarantine Order Allowance is set up to mitigate financial impact for those who have been served Quarantine Orders.
When they have completed their quarantine order, claims of $100 per day can be made by self-employed Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, and by Singapore-registered companies whose employees under QO are Singaporean Citizens, Permanent Residents or Workpass Holders.
Please refer to this factsheet for more information. You can also approach your QO agent for further queries.
I am an employer. How do I know if my employees have been issued a Quarantine Order (QO)? How do I apply for the Quarantine Order Allowance (QOA)?
A Quarantine Order (QO) agent will get in touch with your employee if he/she has been issued a QO. Your employee should notify you that he/she has been issued a QO.
You can only apply for the Quarantine Order Allowance (QOA) after your employee has completed the quarantine/ The person under quarantine will receive the QOA form at the end of the quarantine and pass it to the employer. This is to ensure that he/she has fully compiled with the QO, under the Infectious Disease Act. The employer can then submit the form to MOH for processing.
Please refer to this factsheet for more information.
I am employed. Does being under a QO utilise my quota for medical leave or hospitalisation leave?
Employees who are served a QO will be deemed to be on paid sick leave. The period of absence from work would be treated as paid hospitalisation leave, as part of the employees’ hospitalisation leave eligibility under their employment contracts or agreements.
Please refer to this advisory by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).
If I am unemployed, but under a Quarantine Order (QO), who can I go to for social and financial assistance?
If you are unemployed, but under a Quarantine Order (QO), and need social or financial assistance, please contact your QO agent for further assistance.