Covid-19 tribute: Parliament delivers standing ovation for healthcare workers


We Singaporeans have found our way through the pandemic and emerged stronger.

And as global surveys by the Pew Research Center and the Edelman Trust Institute show, Singapore is now one united nation with trust in the PAP Government at a record high.

These achievements would not have been possible without Singaporeans stepping up and standing together with the PAP Government as it made difficult decisions for the national good.

Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong’s message to us as we transit away from the pandemic is in gratitude and in reflection then.

“We are here to pay tribute to all who have made countless sacrifices and worked so hard to get us through the crisis,” he said in a Parliament session which addressed the White Paper on Singapore’s Response to Covid-19 today (Mar 20).

“We are here to learn, improve and be better prepared when the next pandemic comes.”

The PAP Government, afterall, always does its best to protect Singapore from the trials of today and the tribulations of tomorrow.

“Thank you for your selflessness, dedication, and service.”

The halls of Parliament echoed today (Mar 20) with PAP leaders standing and showering a small contingent of Singapore’s pandemic fighters with a rousing round of applause, in fact.

This contingent was a cross-section representing people who gave their expertise and effort for a stronger Singapore — nurses and doctors, teachers and social service workers, transport workers and supermarket as well as warehouse managers, supply chain and backroom operations staff, Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) and Home Team personnel and Safe Distancing Ambassadors.      

“On behalf of the Government, I would like to put on record our appreciation to everyone who contributed to our Covid fight,” said DPM Wong.

“Your dedication helped Singapore keep going through unprecedented and uncertain times.”

“Your acts of duty, sacrifice and care for fellow Singaporeans uplifted our spirits, boosted our confidence and kept us all safe.”

“Thank you for your selflessness, dedication, and service.”

In particular, DPM Wong highlighted the efforts of healthcare workers and others on the frontline.

“Whether it was at our borders or in the foreign workers dormitories, whether it was in our clinics and hospitals or in quarantine facilities — our frontline warriors willingly assumed personal risks, over and over again, just so as the rest of us could be safe.

“They rose to the occasion when the going got tough, even in the darkest of times,” he added.

Action for Singapore’s future

This heroism, together with the PAP Government’s eight Covid-19 Budgets, meant that Singapore weathered the Covid-19 pandemic well.   

Singapore’s healthcare system held firm. We have one of the world’s lowest Covid-19 fatality rates and one of the world’s highest vaccination rates.

At the same time, the PAP wants to do better. Those dark times meant that leaders had to look “through a glass darkly” when making decisions, said DPM Wong.

The White Paper on Singapore’s Response to Covid-19, encouragingly, is in this spirit of resilience against an inevitable future pandemic.

Its reflections come from after-action reviews across Government agencies. They are unvarnished about what the PAP could have done (and will commit to doing) better.

In particular: The PAP Government keeping Singapore’s supply chains, infrastructure and people resilient.

Carrying on, firmly together 

“Ultimately, what lies at the heart of our resilience is our people,” explained DPM Wong.

 “That’s our most important defence in a pandemic — to be psychologically prepared, to stay united and to support one another and keep faith with each other.”

Hence the sincerity of the White Paper about the Government’s successes and shortcomings.

“Covid-19 brought out the best in us, individually and collectively, said DPM Wong.  

“Despite the pressures and fears, we did not give in; we did not succumb. We stood firmly together, and left no one behind. That’s a mark of our growing maturity and resilience, as a people and as a nation.”

You can share feedback on the White Paper here, or directly at

Top image: MCI/YouTube.