COVID-19 Safe Management Measures

Fast and Easy Testing RRT

Mandatory Fast and Easy Testing-Rostered Routine Testing (FET-RRT) regime

As announced by the Multi-Ministry Taskforce on 18 June 2021, Fast and Easy Testing Rostered Routine Testing (FET-RRT) will be made mandatory for staff in certain high-risk settings. This FET-RRT regime is being imposed under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Regulations.

The National Environment Agency (NEA) is working closely with the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Health Promotion Board (HPB) to manage and administer mandatory Fast and Easy Testing Rostered Routine Testing (FET-RRT) for individuals/staff working in the following work settings from mid-July 2021:

(a)    Markets and Hawker Centres – all stallholders, stall assistants, and cleaners in the 113 markets and hawker centres managed by NEA/NEA-appointed operators/Town Councils.

(b)    Disinfection Companies listed on NEA’s website – Disinfection workers who perform/are trained to perform disinfection services at non-healthcare premises that have been exposed to confirmed case(s) of COVID-19.

(c)     Retail Malls – Cleaners deployed to work at common areas of retail malls. “Retail malls” also include mixed-use developments and HDB shopping centres. The list of retail malls is identified together with ESG, STB and HDB.

Individuals/cleaners/disinfection workers in the above-mentioned work settings will be required to undergo Antigen Rapid Test (ART) every 14 days, regardless of their vaccination status.

Mode of FET-RRT

Individuals/staff in the above-mentioned work settings are required to fulfil their mandatory FET-RRT requirements via one of the two swab modalities, i.e. at Quick Test Centres (QTCs), or the Employer-Supervised Self-Swab (ESSS).

Under ESSS, staff will conduct self-swabs under the supervision of a trained staff (“Supervisor”) appointed by your firm. Supervision can be done either on-site at the workplace or virtually using tools such as video conferencing. Prior to conducting ESSS, your firm will need to appoint staff to complete the Supervisory Training in ART Self-Swab to supervise the self-swab process of your other staff. Upon completion of training, your firm may then start to prepare and conduct the swab operations. Results of the swab tests must be uploaded promptly to the Swab Registration System (SRS) administered by the HPB. If your firm does not have an SRS account, you may notify NEA to create an SRS account for your firm.

The costs for the ART kits and supervisory training will be borne by the Government until 30 September 2021. Should there be any changes, affected firms will be notified.

FET-RRT Workflow

For disinfection workers on FET-RRT via ESSS, the overview of the ESSS process and treatment of swab test results (Negative/ Invalid/ Positive/ Double Invalid results) are shown below.
1 Overview of ESSS process

2 Treatment of AG positive

*SASH PHPC clinic refers to a Swab and Send Home Public Health Preparedness Clinics. Find the list of SASH PHPC at http://phpc.gov.sg/.
**Compliance reporting form is at https://go.gov.sg/artpositivenoncompliance.

3 Ordering of ART kits
For firms on FET-RRT via QTC mode, you may seek more information from the respective NEA Point-of-Contact (POC), i.e. Place Managers for Markets and Hawker Centres and the respective NEA POC for Retail Malls. A general workflow can be found below.

4 Overview of QTC progress

“Vaccinate or Regular Test” (VoRT) Regime

MOH has announced on 13 August 2021 that the new “Vaccinate or Regular Test” (“VoRT”) regime will apply to the sectors listed in Annex A, starting from 1 October 2021, to enable us to detect possible infections early which is key to keeping our community safe.

Unvaccinated individuals from the mentioned settings must be tested twice a week using Antigen Rapid Tests (ART), on top of the existing FET-RRT / other RRT arrangements. The cost of the ART swab tests taken under VoRT will not be funded by the Government unless the staff is medically ineligible for vaccination.

Should your staff be required to undergo VoRT under NEA’s administration, NEA will be reaching out to your firm to request for details of your employees’ vaccination status. Tripartite partners have also issued an advisory on 23 August 2021 encouraging all employers to adopt the VoRT regime for their employees.

We strongly encourage all employers to facilitate vaccination for your employees. A fully vaccinated workforce ensures a safe workplace and safe environment for everyone.

References and Resources

References

Resources for firms placed on FET-RRT ESSS

S/NResource Name Description
 1ESSS Guide (English)

Pictorial guides on ESSS process, preparation of ART kits to be distributed to staff, setting-up of ESSS, uploading of ART swab results to SRS.

 2HMI registration siteLink to HMI Institute’s registration page for Supervisory Training in ART Self-Swab course
 3Swab Registration System (SRS) Guide
SRS Link
How to use SRS, how to create swab supervisors’ accounts, and how to upload ART results in SRS.
 4HPB ART Operations Playbook for Companies

 

Includes infection prevention and control guidelines, handling of ART results, exemption of individuals from FET-RRT, recommended ESSS site layout, uploading of ART results to SRS, and management of ART results (negative/invalid/positive/double invalid)

 5Notification of positive or double invalid ART ResultsNotification to issue to staff with positive/double invalid ART result.
 6Referral note for confirmatory Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) testReferral note to prepare and issue to staff with positive/double invalid ART result.
Standard notification for display use
Notification 1
Notification 2
Notification to firms and staff on data collection for FET-RRT regime.
 8Declaration form for FET-RRT exemptionDeclaration form for staff who needs to be exempted from FET-RRT, i.e. medical contraindications, persons with disabilities, past infection from COVID-19 virus
ART Kits Replenishment FormLink to Replenishment of ART Kits
10 Compliance reporting form for ART positive/double invalid cases and did not attend PCR swab

Link to compliance reporting form for firms with staff who are required to go for PCR swab and did not attend by Day 3 of notification of ART positive/ double invalid results. Enforcement actions will be taken against the staff for non-compliance.

The same form is also to be used for correcting erroneous ART positive results. 

11  Helpful HotlinesIf you have further enquiries on FET-RRT, you may contact FET-RRT hotline at 68765830. The hotline is available from Monday to Friday from 8am to 5pm. 

If you experience problems using the SRS accounts and require troubleshooting or have any technical difficulties, you may contact SRS hotline at 68765848. The hotline is available from Monday to Friday from 8am to 5pm. You may also email AskSRS@hpb.gov.sg on your enquiries.


FAQs

1.       What is Rostered Routine Testing (RRT)?

RRT refers to Rostered Routine Testing where individuals will undergo swabbing on a routine basis, e.g. every 14 days. There are 2 types of RRT – Fast and Easy Testing (FET) and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). FET is currently conducted by Antigen Rapid Test (ART) using ART kits. This can be done via self-swabbing using ART kits under the supervision of an appointed and trained staff in your firm, or at Quick Test Centres (QTC). A PCR swab test is a more accurate, confirmatory test where the individual will be swabbed by clinicians/trained swabbers.


2.       Is this FET-RRT compulsory? What if my staff are already vaccinated?

Yes, this is a compulsory exercise for the cleaners and workers of the selected groups in high-risk settings (refer to “Mandatory Fast and Easy Testing Rostered-Routine Testing (FET-RRT)” section), regardless whether they have been vaccinated or not. This is because vaccinated individuals may still contract COVID-19 or transmit the infection to others. Staff in other high-risk work settings e.g. F&B outlets, are also required to undergo FET-RRT under other sector leads.


3.       What if my staff are already on RRT under other sectors?

If your staff is already on RRT under other sectors (e.g. working in F&B outlets), he/she does not need to undergo the FET-RRT under NEA.  

 

4.       We have unvaccinated staff, do we need to do both FET-RRT and VoRT?

As announced by the Multi-Ministry Taskforce on 6 August and 13 August 2021, unvaccinated individuals must be tested twice a week using Antigen Rapid Tests (ART), under the “Vaccinate or Regular Test” (“VoRT”) regime, starting from 1 October 2021, to enable us to detect possible infections early which is key to keeping our community safe.

This VoRT requirement is in addition to the existing FET-RRT, i.e. the unvaccinated staff will now have to undergo 4 ART tests every 14 days. For the small group that remains medically ineligible for vaccines, the Government will subsidise their tests.


5.       What if my staff have medical contraindications and are unable to do the swab test? E.g. recent nosebleed in the past 24 hours, facial / nasal surgery in the last 4 weeks, facial injuries in the last 8 weeks.

Please do not perform the ART self-testing. Instead, please update NEA so that we may consider the staff to be exempted from FET-RRT or involved in other arrangements.


6.       Do we need to bear the cost for this FET-RRT? How about the cost of the VoRT?

The cost of FET-RRT will be supported fully by the Government for a period of 3 months, from July to 30 September 2021. The coverage will include the provision of Antigen Rapid Test (ART) kits and training of supervisors on swab test management - “Supervisory Training in ART Self-Swab”.

From 1 October 2021, under the VoRT, the Government will subsidise the costs of the additional tests for unvaccinated persons from the identified work settings who are medically ineligible for vaccines.  All other unvaccinated individuals are to bear the costs of the additional tests.


7.       How do we register for ESSS?

An NEA POC would have contacted you to onboard ESSS. If you have not been contacted, please submit a request via the Online Feedback Form and state your firm’s name, UEN, and quote “ART Enquiry” in the description.


8.       Is there a need for re-training if we change the ESSS supervisor? Can we just teach the new supervisor what to do?

It is recommended to appoint staff who will be able to commit to the FET-RRT regime. Each firm is recommended to send two staff for training at the start of the regime to avoid a situation where the firm does not have any trained supervisors remaining in the firm to supervise the swab operations. If the existing staff needs to be replaced, the new staff appointed as the swab supervisor will need to undergo the training by HMI (the HPB-appointed training provider) before conducting the swab operations.


9.       We need to engage additional manpower to help us run the ESSS. Can we claim these expenses from the Government?

No, the funding support from Government does not include the cost of engaging manpower for this FET-RRT. You may identify and appoint suitable individuals from your existing pool of staff where possible. 


10.   How do we obtain the ART kits for FET-RRT?

An NEA POC will approach you to obtain your firm’s details to register for the ART kits. Please provide the relevant information. Upon successful registration, you will be notified to self-collect the first month’s supply ART kits from a designated location. Delivery may be arranged depending on the number of kits required. For subsequent months’ supply of ART kits, firms are to order the kits at http://go.gov.sg/fet-kits.


11.   Where can we set up the swabbing area? Is there any guidance?

You are advised to identify a suitable and well-ventilated area within your firm to conduct the swabbing exercise. If you are conducting in a public space, you are advised to conduct the swab test at off-peak hours, such as before work or after work and avoid breakfast / lunch / dinner hours to minimise crowd attention. Supervisors should also ensure the set up takes in consideration of Safe Management Measures (SMMs) to ensure the swabbing exercise is safe. Supervisors should also keep a 3-metre distance from the staff conducting self-swab during the exercise.

You may also refer to slides 25-27 of HPB's ART Playbook.


12.   What if we cannot locate a suitable swabbing area?

Supervisors may conduct supervision virtually where they watch the staff conduct the swabbing via video-calling platforms (e.g. WhatsApp video, Facetime, Zoom)


13.   What if the staff is sick? Do we still carry out the swab test?

Individuals who are sick and shows signs and symptoms of acute respiratory infection (“ARI”) should not go for the swab test but should visit the doctor at the polyclinic/ General Practitioner (GP) instead to diagnose their symptoms. The ARI symptoms include fever ≥ 37.5°C, cough, runny nose, sore throat, body ache, loss of sense of smell or shortness of breath.


14.   How do we submit the swab test result?

Firms may submit the swab test results to SRS via web portal or mobile portal method. Please refer to the SRS guide. Once the uploading of results to SRS is completed, you will receive an email report update on the upload status. Please check if the results are uploaded successfully and correct any errors and re-upload amended data for affected records.


15.   How do my staff receive their swab test result? 

Once the swab test results are successfully uploaded onto SRS within the testing day, the staff will be notified via SMS on their result with a link to view the details. Staff may also check the HealthHub App or website for the status of their swab test.


16.   When is the deadline to submit the swab test results to SRS?

For AG negative or invalid results, please upload the results to SRS by end of testing day (within 24 hours). For AG positive or double invalid results, please upload the results to SRS within 30 minutes of the tests. SMS notification on test results will only be triggered for test results submitted within 24 hours of swab test.

17.   What if the swab test result of the staff shows invalid or uncertain?

You must re-test the sample if sufficient sample is collected. If sample is insufficient, the staff must do another ART test again.

In the case of double invalid results for an individual (i.e. 2 invalid results), you should not use a third ART kit. Firm is to arrange for the staff to visit a Swab and Send Home/Public Health Preparedness Clinic (SASH PHPC) to get a confirmatory Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test. If the staff with positive or double invalid result did not go for the PCR test by the third day, the staff will be guilty of an offence, and firm is to submit a report to MOH-Case Management Task Group (CMTG) via https://go.gov.sg/artpositivenoncompliance. Enforcement action will be taken against the staff.


18.   Where can we find more information on the ART swab matters?

You may visit the following websites to find out more details about ART swabbing and download relevant posters/guidebooks:

·         http://go.gov.sg/selftestart

·         http://go.gov.sg/art-instructions