MOM issues advisory to employers on Rostered Routine Testing and charging policy for workers in construction, marine, and process sectors, and in dormitories
29 September 2021
On 9 September 2021, the Ministry of Manpower (“MOM”) issued an advisory to employers on Rostered Routine Testing (“RRT”) and charging policy for workers in construction, marine, and process (“CMP”) sectors, and in dormitories (“advisory”). Details are set out below.
Vaccinate or Regular Testing (VoRT) regime and charging policy
From 1 October 2021, all workers in CMP sectors, as well as those residing in dormitories, will have to administer Antigen Rapid Tests (“ART”) in between their RRT. Vaccinated workers must administer one additional ART in between their RRT while unvaccinated workers will have to undertake three additional ART tests to meet the Vaccinate or Regular Testing (“VoRT”) requirements (i.e. two tests per week).
Ahead of the implementation of VoRT and to prepare the sectors and dormitories for the additional requirements, the Building and Construction Authority (“BCA”) and the Economic Development Board (“EDB”) announced the phase-in of mandatory Employer-Supervised Self-Swab (ESSS) ART on top of RRT for the CMP sectors. MOM also started progressively phasing in ART for migrant workers residing in dormitories from 23 August 2021, and this was made mandatory from 13 September 2021.
On 27 August 2021, the Multi-Ministry Taskforce announced the Government’s subsidy of RRT for workers as follows:
- Vaccinated workers: For vaccinated workers, the Government will continue to subsidise the cost of RRT until 31 December 2021. This includes the provision of subsidised ART kits required for baseline tests.
- Unvaccinated workers: For unvaccinated workers on the VoRT regime, the Government will similarly cover the cost of the same tests provided for vaccinated workers. From 1 October 2021, the cost of the two additional ART tests to be taken by unvaccinated workers will be borne by workers or their employers.
The respective testing regimes for vaccinated and unvaccinated workers are summarised in the table below. The testing regimes will be reviewed regularly as the Covid-19 situation evolves.
Testing regimes for workers
Worker groups on
14-Day Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) RRT, with Day 7 ART
Day 3 and Day 11 ART
(Source: MOM “Advisory to employers - Rostered Routine Testing and charging policy for workers in Construction, Marine, and Process sectors, and in dormitories”)
Declaration of medical ineligibility and vaccination status
For the small group of workers who are medically ineligible for vaccines, the Government will continue to subsidise the costs for all required tests until 31 December 2021.
Employers were required to declare the medical status of those workers who are medically ineligible to complete Covid-19 vaccination by 13 September 2021 in order to confirm their eligibility for the subsidised ART kits.
Collection of ART Kits
The collection methods for subsidised ART kits for both vaccinated and unvaccinated workers in CMP sectors and those residing in dormitories are set out in the advisory.
Beyond 2021, the advisory states that employers and businesses should be prepared to factor in the costs of regular testing into their normal business operations. MOM will continue to review the testing subsidies to ensure they support Singapore’s public health efforts, while sharing the costs equitably between taxpayers, employers, and individuals.
MOM strongly urges all employers to encourage their workers to get vaccinated to ensure a Covid-19 safe environment for everyone.
The following materials are available on the MOM website www.mom.gov.sg:
- Advisory to employers - Rostered Routine Testing and charging policy for workers in construction, marine, and process sectors, and in dormitories
- Annex A to advisory - Circulars from sector leads
- Issued by BCA on 26 August 2021: Reminder on mandatory Antigen Rapid Testing (ART) and implementation of Vaccinate or Regular Testing (VoRT) regime for the construction sector
- Issued by EDB on 20 August 2021: Sector-specific requirements for Marine and Process Construction & Maintenance
- Medical declaration forms that were required to be submitted by 13 September 2021