Written Reply by Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, to Parliamentary Question on Covid-19 Self-test Kits
Mr Mohd Fahmi Bin Aliman: To ask the Minister for Sustainability and the Environment (a) whether the Ministry tracks the number of used and unused COVID-19 self-test kits that are made available for distribution in Singapore; (b) if so, what is the data for the period from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to date; and (c) whether the Ministry and the Ministry of Health will consider environmentally sustainable options to mitigate the environmental impact of such self-test kits in Singapore.
1 About 113 million self-test kits have been distributed or sold in Singapore since the start of the pandemic. These include Antigen Rapid Test kits which the Government distributed to households and workplaces, to individuals who received Health Risk Warnings, as well as kits sold in retail outlets and pharmacies.
2 COVID-19 self-test is an important part of our public health strategy to manage the spread of the virus. The Government’s priority has been to ensure that self-test kits are adequate, safe and effective. The disposal of used test kits is governed by guidelines that are driven by the need to minimise exposure to and cross contamination from these used kits. We will work with the Ministry of Health to monitor the development of more environmentally sustainable self-test kits and consider adopting them when they are available.