Identifying the “silent spreaders”

Photo by Martin Lopez from Pexels

If up to 70% of those infected with Covid-19 are asymptomatic (or pre-symptomatic), then we need a way to identify and isolate these “silent spreaders”. Wearing a mask will help but it will be delaying the inevitable — they will eventually spread it to someone, whether at home or in their workplace.

This is where more widespread testing is needed. We could start by swabbing anyone who reports even mild symptoms and all the workers in the affected dorms (where active case-finding is already in progress).

If there aren’t enough test kits or chemical reagents, then let’s make it a national priority to source for them or manufacture them locally. This is a national emergency and time is of the essence.

Author: Gerald Giam

Gerald Giam was a Non-Constituency Member of Parliament from 2011-2015. He is a member of the Workers' Party of Singapore and currently runs a technology consultancy which he co-founded. The opinions expressed on this page are his alone. Published by The Workers' Party, 701 Geylang Road, #04-02 Teambuild Centre, Singapore 389687