The rapid spread of COVID-19 around the globe has impacted the way we receive and view healthcare. Measures were taken to minimise staff exposure to the virus and ill persons. Healthcare systems had to rethink the way they provide for patients through methods that don’t require an in-person visit. All this is done in an attempt to curb the virus from spreading even further.
Even though the concept of online doctors and telehealth apps aren’t entirely new, COVID-19 brought about a surge in its usage. It eased most patients’ access to healthcare, on top of promoting its use to offer minor, chronic, speciality care and more. Telehealth plays a vital role as the healthcare sector navigates its way through this uncertain time. Here are some reasons why.
1. Reduces the risk of virus transmission through virtual care
Consulting with a virtual doctor allow physicians to care for a more significant number of patients without the chances of being near someone who might carry the virus.
When patients come over for their appointment, they’ll have to make the trip down before situating themselves in the waiting area, which usually takes a while. Throughout this time, they’re continually being exposed to other people, which can be of significant risk in the transmission of the virus.
Shifting regular consultations to the digital landscape is a safer option for both health providers and patients.
2. Makes the most out of the workforce
Aside from minimising the risk of catching the virus, telehealth apps allow for maximised care for a wide range of patients. Whether it is to help monitor chronic health conditions or to screen patients who might show COVID-19 symptoms before referring them elsewhere, doctors can provide basic care to patients without being with them physically.
In fact, our MyCLNQ mobile app allows providers to meet with a broader audience. By helping users find and book an appointment at clinics around their area, we help providers to achieve geographic load balancing. Patients have the option to see a doctor virtually to seek treatment. And if the situation calls for it, they can book for a private ambulance service for the smooth transportation to and from hospitals – all through the app.
3. Able to minimise cancellation of appointments
When Circuit Breaker was first introduced, hospitals were scrambling to postpone out-patient appointments to after 4 April. Upon the extension to 1 June, the same process happened again.
Circuit Breaker brought about a series of tighter measures, and Singaporeans were advised to only leave their homes for essential purposes. However, this affected the healthcare sector’s stream of revenue since most appointments were delayed. But with telehealth apps, hospitals can operate in the ‘new normal’ through delivering care virtually. This way, the industry can reduce the rate of deferred appointments as providers continue treating patients through online medical consultations in Singapore.
Even during this unprecedented time, telehealth apps paved the way for the healthcare industry to thrive through many benefits, such as the three factors mentioned above. Not only will it enable physicians to continue treating patients, but it’ll also help maintain the stream of revenue for the healthcare sector.
During the Circuit Breaker period, most parents have been adapting to new routines in an attempt to keep their children entertained and occupied while working from home. After having the June holidays brought forward, preschoolers and primary school students found themselves returning to school – to an entirely new environment.
For example, assigned seating areas, the compulsory wearing of masks, and alternating between home-based learning and going to school. Of course, practicing good sanitary habits are just as crucial for your children to stay healthy and safe. But as parents, what can we do to ensure that our children remain happy and healthy?
Talk to your child about COVID-19
If you feel worried about how they are taking the pandemic, why not start with their understanding instead? Ask them questions on what they know and if they have any concerns. From there, you can correct any misconceptions they have or clarify their uncertainties. And if you don’t know the answer to any of their questions, be honest about it.
Throughout the pandemic, talk to them frequently about how they’re coping and feeling. At the same time, keep your child up to date about COVID-19 while encouraging them to ask you if they have any questions!
If you’re wondering how exactly to approach the conversation, here is a guide for you to follow! Feel free to edit it accordingly, based on your child’s understanding:
- Definition: COVID-19 is a virus that can make you sick. Those with COVID-19 can experience cough, fever and trouble breathing! For some kids, they might not show any apparent symptoms or only mild signs like a runny nose.
- Why it’s contagious: The germs from COVID-19 can remain on your hands. That’s why, if you touch your nose, ears or mouth with uncleaned hands, the bacteria can easily enter your body. Since the virus is so tiny to the naked eye, it’s essential for you always to wash your hands with soap or use a hand-sanitiser to disinfect and stay clean! And if an infected person standing very near you coughs or sneezes without a mask on, then that can also spread the virus.
- Precautions: There’s much news surrounding COVID-19, and that’s because it’s an entirely new virus that we’ve never seen before. Thus, this why there are so many experts around the world doing their best to learn about the virus for us to be safe! In Singapore, one example is how it is a must to keep our masks on all the time when we’re out in public unless we’re eating or exercising.
Stay alert for any signs of COVID-19 in your child
A quick look up at the Ministry of Health website can illustrate the common signs of COVID-19 in adults, but it’s also important to know how the virus looks like in children. Some of the most telling symptoms are:
- Dry cough
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
- Abdominal pain
Unlike most adults, a substantial number of children won’t develop pneumonia. Instead, their symptoms are similar to typical childhood viral illnesses! Sometimes, they might not even have any signs indicating the virus.
But if your child is feeling unwell and experiences any of the symptoms mentioned above, you can talk to a virtual doctor in Singapore for an online consultation through our mobile app: MyCLNQ. And depending on the doctor’s diagnosis, you can immediately call for a private ambulance that is accompanied with medically-trained escorts for a seamless transfer to a nearby hospital or clinic.
Help them feel like they’re in control
Teach your child that their actions have consequences, but they have the power to control it. Explain to them that something as simple as washing their hands regularly helps curb the spread of viruses to others. Of course, if you lead by example, then they’re more likely to follow!
Keep in contact with loved ones
Encourage your children to reach out to their loved ones through phone or video calls. You can engage in old-school ways with handwritten letters, also known as snail mail! This way, they can unleash their creativity by drawing and writing.
Be sensitive to their emotions
During this unprecedented time, many adults may experience higher levels of anxiety and stress. Without you noticing, your children might be facing battles of their own. Since not all children respond to stress the same way, you can look out for increased feelings of sadness or worry, unhealthy eating and sleeping habits and if they’re facing difficulty concentrating.
Alleviate their worries by talking to them. Let them know that you’re always ready with your listening ears. By doing so, you’re encouraging them to verbalise their emotions. During this process, it allows them to reflect on their experiences.
Encourage them to stay active
With more pockets of free time, do you feel more motivated to workout rather than staying sedentary at home? Invite your kids with you! There are many videos on YouTube with workouts and yoga exercises that are both family-friendly and kid-friendly. Check out “Big W” and “Cosmic Kids Yoga” on YouTube, as you and your child stretch into a healthier lifestyle! This can also help to raise mood levels.
There’s plenty to be done. As parents, we must come up with a flexible routine that we’re comfortable with to facilitate the learning process in our children. However, caring for yourself is just as important! The stress and anxiety of the current pandemic can take its toll on you. Be aware of your feelings and turn to your loved ones for a listening ear or speak with a medical professional.
Through the accessibility of telehealth services through MyCLNQ, there’s no need to go through the hassle of scheduling an appointment and waiting through endless queue numbers to speak to a doctor! Now, you can choose to consult a doctor online instead and reduce the risk of being in close physical proximity with others.
When the Circuit Breaker measure was first announced in Singapore, schools had to transition to home-based learning and most offices operated from home. Now that we’re in Phase 2, most non-essential businesses remain physically closed as work from home continues, while students abide by a different set of schooling arrangements.
Throughout this period, we’ve seen many trends from getting creative in the kitchen to taking regular walks outside the park. It seems like the new normal is granting us the luxury of time for us to dabble in new hobbies or do the things we’ve always wanted but never had the chance to.
You might have kickstarted your Circuit Breaker by coming up with a list of activities you want to accomplish. However, not everyone is in the position to use this period as a means to upgrade themselves. In contrast, you might have felt unproductive instead. Here’s why we think unproductivity is completely normal during this crisis.
1. Increased workload
Just because you’re working from home, it doesn’t mean that you automatically have pockets of free time on your hands. In fact, it can be the exact opposite. You might have struggled with adapting to work-from-home arrangements. With entertainment options and family members around you, it might feel counterproductive instead. And once you can finally go back to doing work after some interruptions, you’ll need to put in additional effort to settle in the right mood.
2. Worries about the virus
The COVID-19 pandemic took us by surprise. Even now, scientists, researchers and healthcare professionals are still trying their very best to find a cure or vaccination for the virus. As time goes by, the news outlets are continually reporting on new cases cropping up in Singapore. It’s inevitable to feel stressed out over something that could potentially harm us, yet we have no control over. In turn, it affects our focus and in turn, our productivity to get things done.
3. Productivity is not the same for everyone
With the prominent presence of social media in our lives, we can’t help but compare our progress to others. Meanwhile, we need to remind ourselves that the content we see on social media is mostly curated. Of course, people will be more likely to show their happiest, joyful moments rather than sad ones.
Beat the unproductive bug
Your feelings and experiences are valid. But at the same time, staying in a slump for a prolonged period isn’t healthy for your mental health as it can bring about feelings of anxiety and stress. Adding on, it can lead to decreased motivation when working on your tasks. So, if you want to get back on track, here are some tips.
- Evaluate existing unproductive habits
Over time, we might have picked up on certain unproductive habits without us realising. However, you are in control of what you feel and think! So, you must be aware of them and how they affect your day. For example, if you’re worrying too much about the remembering the simplest of things, write down your tasks, ideas and thoughts. You can use your brainpower to something more useful like solving problems to help you in your work.
- Engage in your hobbies
Often, we tend to forget to take breaks. And when we fall into a daily routine, it can lead to us feeling burnt out. To boost productivity, try engaging in your favourite activities for one to three hours during your rest days. It can help you to feel more energised and rejuvenated, so you can focus your energy doing your daily work task on working days.
- Talk to someone
Instead of bottling up all your feelings, it’s good to say them out loud so you can acknowledge and validate your emotions. Sometimes, you may also get a personal advice that may be helpful to your situation. However, if you feel uncomfortable to share your problems with someone in your life, reach out to a professional. They can provide a listening ear and guide you through the process of working out your feelings and how you can navigate the problem.
Feeling unproductive is a normal experience, but we shouldn’t take a long time to complete what we have to finish; otherwise, our tasks would end up snowballing. Instead, work on acknowledging your feelings before taking a break, and then getting back to your task!
If you’re feeling the stress and blues of working from home and staying indoors during this COVID-19 period, and are having a hard time managing it, there are telehealth services available for virtual consultations with a professional. Check out our MyCLNQ mobile app, available on Google Play store and the App Store, to help you consult a doctor online from the comfort of your own home. Without the trouble of waiting through long queue systems or traveling a distance to the clinic, you can talk to an online doctor conveniently through video, Tele or chat via your mobile phone.
Alternatively, you can also turn to these helplines to get the help you need for your emotional or psychological well-being during these stressful times.
National Care Hotline: 1800-202-6868
TOUCHline (Counselling): 1800 377 2252
Samaritans of Singapore: 1800-221-4444
Institute of Mental Health’s Mental Health Helpline: 6389-2222
Long before we get professionally diagnosed with an illness, our body actually gives us warning signs! As they may be rather subtle, it can be quite natural for us to overlook them and move on with our daily routine.
However, some minor symptoms can be indicators of severe medical conditions. Hence, it’s imperative for you to know what exactly to look out for so you can notice the early signs before the sickness further develops. In some cases, such as a stroke, it can be a matter of life and death.
Here are some signs of underlying health issues that you definitely shouldn’t ignore.
Anytime you experience a burning sensation in your chest after a meal or at night, your mother would probably be the first to tell you that your body is feeling “heaty”. This is also known as heartburn. If you’re lying down on the bed, then the pain can be so intense that you’d have to sit up in an attempt for it to subside.
On an occasional basis, there’s no need to get worried over heartburn. The pain can typically be relieved with over-the-counter medications and changes in your lifestyle. But when it occurs for up to twice a week, despite taking medication, then it can be a sign for you to seek medical care.
Numbness, mainly if it only occurs exclusively on one side of the body, can be a severe indicator of stroke. Alternatively, it can also be associated with other diseases like diabetes. No matter what, you should always get it investigated every time you experience a numbing sensation.
3. Bad breath
Many factors lead to bad breath. It could be the food you eat, poor oral health habits or smoking cigarettes. But did you know that it can also be a sign of other health issues?
When your bad breath is persistent, or if there’s always a bad taste in your mouth, then it could be a red flag signalling gum disease, which is caused by the buildup of plaque on the teeth. If gum disease is left untreated, it could lead to damage in both the gums and jawbone. Bad breath can also be due to cavities, bronchitis and many other diseases and illnesses.
4. Chapped lips
In our sunny Singapore, dry lips may seem like a norm, but it’s nothing that can’t be solved with lip balm. But when your lips continue to appear all dried up and cracked despite taking preventive measures, then you can consider a visit to the dermatologist.
Sometimes, it can be because of dehydration or malnutrition, which requires serious attention from a doctor. Notably, it signals the lack of B vitamins in your system, which puts you at risk of anaemia.
If you urgently require medic services, you can quickly request for a private ambulance in Singapore through MyCLNQ, a mobile application with an array of digital telehealth services for your healthcare needs!
Even though we’ve transitioned to Phase 2 of post-Circuit Breaker, some people are still wary of leaving their house to stay safe. Instead of scheduling an in-person appointment, you now have the option of seeing a doctor online, directly through your mobile phone! While it is important to keep vigilant on any COVID-19 symptoms, it is also crucial to pay attention to your overall health and check for other worrying signs that may indicate a health concern.
Our free mobile app is available on both Google and Apple
For Google play store
For Apple app store
If you want to eat more, it is simple! be mindful of your choices. People tend to eat more because their choices of food are NOT nutritious.
Take a look at that example; for just a cheeseburger and coke the calories is still higher than consuming 5 nutritious food. This is why when people who love eating fast food are hungry all the time. The food is not nutritious but the calories content is very high. This is also the reason for weight gain.
HOW DO YOU CHOOSE WHAT TO EAT?
Download a helpful app that allows you to track your nutrients intake including calories goals. For example, MyFitnessPal is great for you to track your meals.
Always be mindful of carbs.
-Switch your white rice to cauliflower rice
-Switch your potatoes to pumpkin
– Instead of deep-frying your fries, air-fry it and don’t add salt
We should all strive to eat better but do not starve yourself. You can still enjoy food without getting fat or unhealthy. Start being mindful to the things you put inside your body. These are precautions you can take to not fall sick and live a long and healthy life.
Stay home but stay healthy. We can still go out to do simple aerobic exercises to stay healthy and keep our immune system strong!
Singapore Health Promotion Board and Ministry of Health have launch plenty of guidelines to keep Singaporeans active and healthy. You may visit the following websites for more details:
https://www.livehealthysg.com/, https://www.healthhub.sg/ ,https://www.hpb.gov.sg/
So what is AEROBIC EXERCISE?
It is any type of cardiovascular conditioning aka CARDIO.Another way to describe aerobic exercise or “cardio” is that it’s the type of workout that increases both your heart rate and breathing
Simple activities that you can still do right now is, Skipping, Running/Jogging, Brisk Walking and Cycling.
If you do not wish to leave your house during this pandemic, a simple skipping rope exercise of 45 mins can burn up to 450 calories! That is as good as running outside!
30 minutes or more of aerobic exercise five or more days each week
WHY IS IT GOOD?
Aerobic exercise helps keep your heart, lungs, and circulatory system healthy
The different benefits of Aerobic Exercises
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Prevent or manage various conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes
- Strengthen your bones and muscles
- Improve your mood
- Improve your balance and coordination
- Increased cardiovascular fitness
- Increased muscle strength and flexibility
- Improved joint mobility
- Decreased stress levels
- Improved posture and coordination
- Strengthened bones
- Decreased body fat levels.prevention or management of diseases
- Help to build strong bones, as it is a weight bearing exercise
- Strengthen muscles.improve cardiovascular fitness
- Burn plenty of kilojoules
- Help maintain a healthy weight.
Even after the Circuit Breaker ends and Singapore enters Phase 1, most people are still working from home.
What are the challenges of remote working especially during the pandemic? Is remote working here to stay even after the crisis?
Tech companies like Facebook, Twitter. are announcing that the transition to remote work is going to be permanent.Mark Zuckerberg announced that up to half of Facebook’s employees could be working remotely in five to 10 years
In Singapore, employees are only allowed to go into the office only when it is necessary or if they need to access something sensitive like legal work. If your employer in Singapore operates a non-essential service but insists that you continue working; you may report this to Covid_GoBusiness@mti.gov.sg.
In this new work-from-home reality that we’re living in, it’s particularly challenging for people to draw a line between work life and personal life. It is very important for employers to
- Respect working hours and off-working hours
- Ease on micromanaging and trust employees
- Have clear communication tools. E.G Slack for Updates, Emails for Reports etc
Some “traditional” companies that don’t believe in flexible work or remote work have been forced into it by the pandemic. These managers are definitely forced to trust employees and accept that digital transformation is necessary to keep the business alive
Here are some communication tools you can use to for remote working
As of 18th May 2020, 88% of the covid19 cases are Work Permit holders living in Dormitories. This also means that all of them will be returning to the workforce soon when they have recovered. So what happens next? Singapore is using a device that is given to every worker to monitor their oxygen level and can help detect early signs of a deterioration in health
It is important for Singapore to provide medical support in the recovery phase of covid19. This helps to ensure that workers living in the dorms are supervised and are well enough to eventually return to work
MyCLNQ wants to be part of this. Our app may not be popular among the work permit holders in Singapore but we are definitely looking to change this by
- Giving them e-vouchers to use in case of the need for non-emergency medical transport
- Contact relevant companies that have employees that are made up of work permit holders to educate them on how to use our app
The team at MyCLNQ feels that EVERYONE should have the knowledge and access to simpler healthcare especially during this time when everyone is using a smartphone. If they can use Facebook, they will definitely be able to navigate our user-friendly app.
We hope to kickstart this project by early June to ensure that we are doing our part as a company to help Singapore in this difficult time