New reusable masks, hand sanitizer distributed by the Temasek Foundation in March and April

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SINGAPORE: Residents of Singapore will be able to pick up reusable face masks and alcohol-free hand sanitizer for free from March and April, from another national distribution by the Temasek Foundation.

In a Facebook post, Ho Ching, CEO of Temasek Holdings, said the reusable masks would be ready for collection on March 1. Every resident of Singapore can each collect a navy blue mask from the Swiss company Livinguard, provided by the Temasek Foundation, she said in the last post Friday (Feb.19).

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“As before, we cover Singaporean residents and non-Singaporean residents, because no one is safe until everyone is safe,” said Mdm Ho.

This is the fourth national distribution of masks by the Temasek Foundation, and the collection will run for two weeks.

The new mask is made up of two layers – the outer layer is a water-repellent antimicrobial layer while the antibacterial treatment on the inner layer “kills all bacteria in our saliva,” said Mdm Ho.

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The mask also does not need to be washed off after daily use, she said. Instead, the mask can be washed once or twice a week. With up to 30 washes, the mask can be used daily for approximately six to seven months.

Even after 30 washes, the mask can be used as a regular two-layer cotton mask. It can also be used as an “outer mask” to provide better protection for those who may wear another mask underneath.

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“For example, if there were to be an outbreak of the more infectious variants from the UK, South Africa or Brazil, we would have to use a double mask for extra protection,” said Mdm Ho.

Mask vending machines in four community centers are also being moved to accommodate the workflow for the COVID-19 vaccination rollout. (Photo: Facebook / Ho Ching)

The new Livinguard mask also has an elastic chin to provide a better fit and better airtightness. However, its size differs from the black ProShield masks that were handed out in another exercise last November.

“Double check your mask size before collecting or ordering, as no exchanges or refunds will be allowed for hygienic reasons,” said Mdm Ho.

Meanwhile, mask vending machines at 20 community centers have been moved to adjacent blocks of HDB, as the centers will be used for the nationwide rollout of COVID-19 vaccination.

Vending machines are also being restocked, Mdm Ho added.

HAND SANITIZER DISTRIBUTION TO START MID-APRIL

In its second such initiative, the Temasek Foundation is also distributing 500ml of alcohol-free hand sanitizer to every household from mid-April.

The disinfectant is produced by the local company Klenco.

Unlike the previous distribution exercise in April 2020, residents can pick up the free hand sanitizer from vending machines.

Residents will need to bring their Singapore Power (SP) utility bill, along with their own bottle, for collection.

The SP bill for March and April – paper and electronic – will contain a special QR code with the residents’ SP bill number.

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To start the collection process, residents will need to scan the QR code at the vending machine readers or enter their SP invoice number on the touchscreen. When completed, a #BYOB bottle sticker will be generated and residents will be able to pick up their hand sanitizer for free.

Mdm Ho hopes this will allow every household to gather “hassle-free, anytime” at the nearest community centers.

More information will soon be available for the two distribution years.

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