SINGAPORE: Children aged five to 11 will be able to walk in to any paediatric vaccination centre to get their first COVID-19 shot without a prior appointment from Mondays to Thursdays.
This arrangement, which starts on Tuesday (Jan 25), means parents and guardians no longer have to wait up to five working days to receive a unique link via SMS to book a slot.
But bookings still need to be made for Fridays to Sundays, the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) said in a joint media release on Monday.
Previously, only children who are accompanying a sibling to a vaccination appointment are allowed to receive their jab without a booking, under the “sibling walk-in” arrangement implemented on Jan 10.
Parents and guardians who intend to have their child or ward vaccinated under the new walk-in arrangement should arrive at the vaccination centre by 7pm, MOE and ECDA said.
They must bring along the child’s student identification or other forms of identification – such as birth certificate, passport or SingPass – for verification. A signed soft or hard copy of the parental consent form is also required. A copy can be downloaded at this website.
“Vaccination centres are currently unable to accommodate the general walk-in arrangement on Fridays to Sundays due to high demand in appointment bookings on these days,” said MOE and ECDA.
“We seek the understanding and cooperation of parents/guardians to keep to the stipulated days and hours for the general walk-in arrangement, to ensure that we can provide a smooth and orderly vaccination process for all our children.”
MOE and ECDA urged those who intend to vaccinate their child or ward under the new arrangement to release any bookings they have made.
They also provided updates on the vaccination progress for children.
As of Jan 23, nearly 160,000 children aged between five and 11 have already received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. More than 13,000 children have got their second dose.
More than 6,000 children have taken advantage of the “sibling walk-in” arrangement, they added.
About 70 per cent of students in MOE primary schools have registered for vaccination, with 85 per cent of Primary 6 students having done so.
“We have also received more than 23,000 registrations from all children aged 5 to 11 on the MOH National Appointment System at child.vaccine.gov.sg,” they said.
Of these, more than 13,000 are children of “typical pre-school age” – those born between 2016 and 2017. More than 10,000 children from ECDA-licensed preschools and MOE kindergartens have registered their interest.
MOE and ECDA urged parents and guardians to have their child or ward fully vaccinated “as soon as possible” as local cases rise.
“This will also be a key factor in whether our schools can resume more activities that are important to the holistic development of our children,” they said.