The haze is back. As much as we dread the return of this respiratory threat, there is little that…
Government and citizens have taken a slew of measures which has changed the daily lives of people. Of course, Singapore is not alone in this trend with many prominent cities experiencing a complete lockdown which entails closing of any economic activity or public events which invite mass participation. In this article, we will cover how Singaporeans’ lives have been changed since the start of this coronavirus outbreak.
To refrain themselves from touching banknotes, which carries bacteria or viruses, Singaporeans have started to increase the use of online transactions and electronic payments. DBS had observed that the majority of financial transaction is transacted through mobile phones and most customers have chosen to go digital instead. While in China, China UnionPay’s online payments saw an increase of a whopping 46.79% during Chinese New Year as China’s central bank initiated to disinfect banknotes and store it for up to 14 days to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Since DORSCON was raised to Orange in Singapore, many buyers have resorted to online purchase due to panic-buying apart from general purchases. Lazada saw a 300% increase in demands through its grocery service RedMart. The surge is not limited to essential goods or shopping goods but delivery services such as Grab, Deliveroo and Foodpanda as well. Lazada has reported that the size of orders has changed. Shoppers are spending up to ten times more on food staples, five times more on paper product and six times more on personal care and household cleaning supplies.
To comply with the government’s demand of not hosting large public events, many churches are shifting their masses and other religious activities online. It became a norm after 2 employees from Grace Assembly of God were found to have contracted coronavirus. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, instead of worshipping in churches or other religious institutions every weekend, Singaporeans have now shifted to worship from their electronic devices.
Ministry of Manpower, NTUC and the Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF) advise employers to take employee’s temperature twice a day. Apart from this, temperatures have to be taken before anyone enters any buildings, schools, religious institution and shops. Singaporeans are experiencing this radical shift from their previous experiences which only require them to go through when visiting a hospital. The rationale behind this might be well grounded given that almost 98% of the COVID-19 patients reported having fever.
To curb any spread of coronavirus, the Ministry of Manpower has encouraged employees to split teams to minimise interaction or work from home to avoid commuting on public transport to the workplace. Platforms such as Zoom and Skype have been used to facilitate video conferencing and communication. With the new measures, office buildings have been observed to be less crowded than before. Given that six in ten Singaporeans used to work remotely once a week even before the coronavirus outbreak, Singaporean need not worry as transitioning to flexible work arrangements should not be a problem.
To prevent the risk of contracting coronavirus through day-to-day interactions with other people, Singaporeans are trying to shirk away from the standard greetings of shaking someone’s hands. In line with practising social distancing and avoiding unnecessary contact, people greet each other warmly and politely by waving or bumping elbows or fists.
To combat the outbreak of COVID-19, Singaporean is washing their hands or/and using hand sanitizers at a higher frequency than usual to maintain personal hygiene. The previous study shows that only 31% of men and 65% of women wash their hands after using a public restroom. It is expected that there will be an increase in the amount of percentage as people begin to gain more awareness about the germs we are exposed to daily.
COVID-19 is forecast to have a huge impact globally. As such, Singapore might be adapting to necessary changes to keep the country safe.
Wait what? there’s no more coronavirus? How about checking out this article if you are travelling to Singapore once again!
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