SINGAPORE – The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) issued 141 digital birth certificates on Sunday (May 29), the first day such certificates are given in place of physical hard copies, its spokesman told The Straits Times on Monday night.
The authority added that it issued another 78 digital birth certificates as at 6pm on Monday, bringing the total to 219.
Over the past five years, about 39,100 birth certificates were issued each year, said the ICA. This works out to an average of 107 physical birth certificates issued a day previously. The number of digital certificates issued on Sunday was thus higher than this average.
In a move to make the registration process easier, physical birth and death certificates will no longer be issued from Sunday, the ICA announced earlier this month.
Instead, digital certificates are now issued and all registrations are done online. In-person birth and death registrations will no longer be available.
For some parents like Mr Muhammad Fahmi Nurkamal, the convenience of a digital birth registration was worth waiting for.
The 27-year-old watch technician’s daughter was born last Monday, but he and his wife decided to wait a week so that they could register her birth digitally on Sunday.
Baby Mia was among the first to be issued a digital birth certificate here.
“It was a good choice because it ended up being very convenient. I registered her birth a little after midnight on May 29. It was all done in less than 20 minutes. I imagine it would be a hassle to head down to ICA to register and collect the birth certificate,” said Mr Fahmi, whose wife, Ms Fadilah Selamat, 33, a financial adviser, gave birth to their first born at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
Before the process was digitalised, parents had to register their child’s birth at the hospital where the baby was born or at ICA’s Registry of Births and Deaths at the ICA Building in Kallang.
Previously, parents also had the option to register their child’s birth online, but they still needed to collect the physical certificate at the hospital or ICA Building.
Parents can now register the birth of their newborns via the LifeSG app or website, and receive an instant notification to download the digital certificate.
They will be given up to 90 days to download the document, which can be stored and saved on their devices.
When asked if he plans to print out his daughter’s birth certificate, Mr Fahmi said: “I don’t think so. I think it’s good enough that my wife and I have it stored in our phones so we will never lose it.”