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VISA NEEDED FOR VISITORS FROM EBOLA-AFFECTED COUNTRIES

From tomorrow, nationals from Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone will require a visa to enter Singapore.

Minister of State for Health Lam Pin Min said in Parliament yesterday that this will "allow for better oversight and control of entry" of citizens from the three West African countries where the Ebola virus is still spreading.

The new rule will also make it easier to trace the people they come in contact with, if necessary, he added.

Dr Lam, who is also the Member of Parliament for Sengkang West, said that Singapore has in place measures at air, sea and land entry points.

For example, visitors from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, as well as from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mali, are screened for fever and must answer questions to assess their risk of exposure to Ebola, which spreads largely through direct contact with bodily fluids such as blood.

Dr Lam also said that the Health Ministry will continue to work with the National Infection Prevention and Control Committee to review its guidelines and to ensure that hospitals here are prepared in managing suspected and confirmed Ebola cases.

Meanwhile, Dr Lam said Singapore will continue to work with the World Health Organisation (WHO) in combating the disease "based on our capability and available resources, including the possibility of seconding one of our experts to assist WHO headquarters".