Marina Bay Sands Singapore Tests Entire Staff for COVID-19 Amid Latest Outbreak
Posted on: May 31, 2021, 03:15h.
Last updated on: May 31, 2021, 04:27h.
Marina Bay Sands isn’t taking any chances amid the most recent outbreak of COVID-19 in Singapore.
Singapore has been hailed by world health experts as one of the success stories in combating the coronavirus pandemic. But in May, things changed, as the island city-state experienced a surge in new cases and hospitalizations.
The Southeast Asian country identified its Changi Airport as a COVID-19 cluster. Foreign travelers from high-risk countries were linked to spreading the virus to airport workers, and the new infections were found to have the highly contagious variant that first surfaced in India known as B.1.617.
Singapore reimplemented strict regulations, the most severe being segregating passengers from high-risk countries from those arriving from lower-risk places. Specific terminals and immigration entrances are being used for each classification.
Another concern in Singapore is the slow rollout of vaccines. Only 36 percent of people in Singapore have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That’s substantially lower than other highly developed countries, including the UK (58 percent), Canada (56 percent), and United States (50 percent).
Sands Pledges Safety
Marina Bay Sands, owned and operated by Las Vegas Sands, is often cited as the gold standard of the global integrated resort industry. The multibillion-dollar destination is informing guests that it’s taking all necessary steps to assure that none of its employees are carrying the virus.
The casino temporarily closed in mid-May after two of its casino table game dealers tested positive. The complex underwent a deep clean on May 17-19.
Sands has since embarked on testing its entire workforce. The resort says a total of 7,450 team members and 800 contractors were administered the antigen rapid test, and all results came back negative.
Sands adds that all team members are routinely subject to an enhanced polymerase chain reaction test, depending on their job profile and risk exposure.
In these unprecedented times, we continue to be vigilant on all fronts, working closely with the authorities to respond and adapt quickly to the situation,” a Marina Bay Sands statement explained. “Marina Bay Sands continues to operate our venues and attractions with the highest of care, raising the bar in our safety and hygiene safeguards to instill a greater sense of comfort and reassurance among our guests, team members, and the wider community.”
All visitors are required to download and use the COVID-19 tracing app TraceTogether when entering the property.
Restrictions in Place
The Sands casino reopened on May 19, but with numerous COVID-19 safeguards in place.
Table games are limited to two players, guests and employees must wear face masks indoors, and social distancing is being enforced. Dine-in service remain on hold for restaurants and bars.
Similar protocols are implemented at Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore’s other integrated casino resort. Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said today that the restrictions will be lifted June 13, assuming the COVID-19 situation continues to improve.
“Barring another super-spreader or big cluster, we should be on track to bring this outbreak under control,” he said.
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