SINGAPORE – From Saturday, residents can book an appointment for influenza vaccination with more than 580 general practitioners (GPs) through a government health appointment system.
At book.health.gov.sg/flu, residents will first type in their postal code to see a list of participating clinics nearby or whether their clinic is on the list.
Participating clinics are on the Community Health Assistance Scheme (Chas), which provides Singaporeans with subsidised medical and dental care. Residents can then book a slot via the appointment system at the clinic of their choice.
Anyone aged six months and older is eligible to receive a flu jab to reduce the risk of infection and its complications.
The Ministry of Health strongly recommends it for certain groups of people who are at higher risk of developing serious influenza complications, such as seniors aged 65 years and above, people with chronic medical conditions and pregnant women.
The vaccination is not free, but Singaporeans who are eligible for subsidies at the Chas GP clinics will pay a fee capped at $9 for the Pioneer Generation, $18 for the Merdeka Generation or those with the Chas Blue or Orange card, and $35 for Chas Green card or Non-Chas cardholders.
This will change in the second half of next year for those aged 60 and above, if they sign up with a GP under the Government’s new preventative care strategy, Healthier SG. If their GP deems that they need nationally recommended vaccinations, such as for the flu, these will be free.
The flu vaccination is fully subsidised for children aged six months to below five years, as well as children and adolescents aged five to 17 years old who have medical conditions.
The health appointment system was launched by Open Government Products (OGP) – a division of Government Technology Agency – in mid-August this year to improve pneumococcal vaccination take-up rates amongst those aged 65 years and older.
To date, the system has facilitated almost 10,000 pneumococcal vaccination appointments, according to an OGP press release.