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     FrontPage Edition: Thu 20 December 2007

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 No reported cases of medical complications related to body art tattoo


Parliamentary QA: Body Art Tattoo

Question No: 438 Question By: Dr Lam Pin Min
To ask the Minister for Health whether
(i) there were any reported cases of medical complications related to body art tattoo; and
(ii) regulations are necessary in the body art tattoo industry to prevent the possible transmission of infectious diseases through unhygienic practices.
Reply from MOH
Tattooing procedures carry the risk of transmitting infectious diseases, like HIV, hepatitis B and C. However, if sterilised or disposable needles are used and proper infection control measures are followed, the risk of infection is very small.
The Health Promotion Board has put in place health education programmes, mainly through health education pamphlets, for tattooists, barbers, hairdressers and beauticians.
These include information on the precautions that should be taken, such as the use of disposable equipment where possible, thorough disinfection and sterilization of non-disposable skin piercing equipment, and the practice of good personal hygiene.
In the past 30 years, there have been no reports of infectious disease transmission or serious complications from a body tattooing procedure in Singapore. There is no compelling need to regulate the industry. But we will continue to monitor this industry, and leave open the issue of whether to introduce legislation to control it.

Source: News 12 Nov 2007

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